Friday, November 29, 2013

11/29/13 Report - November Treasure Coast Finds and Poll Results

Written by the Treasureguide for the exclusive use of

The most recent blog poll has concluded and the results are in.  The results are interesting and combined with the results of a previous poll are very significant to me.

In this poll, there were 100 respondents.  That is a good sample size.

First off, 84 percent of those that responded to the poll did not find any cobs or treasure coins.  That is a pretty high percentage.  So if you did not find one, you are not alone.  In fact, you are in the majority.

More than five times the number that found cobs or treasure coins did not.  To put it another way only about 15% of those who responded to the poll did find a cob or treasure coin.

My highest Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Detecting Conditions rating during November was a 3. If you generalize from the results of this poll, your chances of finding a cob or treasure coin is something close to 15% when I issue a 3 rating on the scale.  And of course a 2 rating would indicate your chances are somewhat less -  maybe something more like 1 in 5 or 10 or somewhere in between.  I'll continue to try to better calibrate my scale.  These numbers do help.

I've always imagined that a 5 rating (excellent conditions) would give you something like a 50/50 chance.  Maybe that is too high or two low.  I haven't had a 5 rating yet and therefore haven't had the chance to test it out.  Maybe I'm trying to make this more precise than is possible.  The numbers do give me a good perspective though.

One very interesting thing to me is that of those who found a cob or treasure coin, four times the number found multiple cobs or coins than found a single cob or treasure coin.

This relates to one thing I always taught in this blog since the very beginning.  Birds of a feather flock together.  In other words, if you find one of an item, there is a good chance that there are more of the same or similar items.  You might remember my discussion about coin lines and holes in previous posts.

A find is more than a find.  It is also a sign or indicator.  That is one of the big reasons that I discourage the use of too much discrimination.  Finds, even junk finds, can provide important information.

I talked about clustering a lot before.  The same types of items tend to accumulate near each other on a beach.  I've elaborated on that at great length in the past and how density, shape and other factors determine where an item ends up on a beach.

This poll shows that the chances are very good that if you find one cob or treasure coin that you will find a second or third.

In November I know of three cobs that were found in one small area and another found not very far away (probably less than 50 yards) from that.

Somebody asked me not too long ago if they should walk fast or slow when detecting.  My answer was walk fast when you are looking for a good spot, but walk slow when you have reason to believe you might have identified a good spot.

One of the better indicators of a good spot is a good find.  Again, birds of a feather flock together.

The fact that those who found one cob or treasure also usually found more also suggests that those people were at the right place at the right time.  To do that you are either lucky, or have scouted around, read the beaches and focused on the spots that looked better than others.

Of those that did make finds, more found four or more than found a single cob or treasure coin and more than twice as many found 2 or 3 than found a single cob or treasure coin.

Comparing the results of this poll with the results of the poll that I conducted after Sandy, there are some very similar conclusions.

There were 90 respondents in the post-Sandy poll.  15 of those respondents indicated that they had found cobs or treasure coins.  That is the same number of people that indicated finding cobs or treasure coins this November. Since the number of respondents is a very little higher in this poll, percentage wise a slightly smaller number found cobs in November, but that is a very small and undoubtedly insignificant difference.  As I recall, my highest beach conditions rating during Sandy was also a 3.

I'll have to look it up to make sure that is correct.  If I did issue a 4 rating during Sandy, it was for a very short time.

In conclusion, if you were wondering if you were the only one that did or didn't find anything, now you know you are not alone, but more people did not make a find than did and many of those who did make a find made multiple finds.

The high surf that was predicted for 7/12 has disappeared from the predictions.  Too bad.

A 6 foot surf is possible for tomorrow on the Treasure Coast.    The wind is also from the North again.

I'm sticking with a 1(poor) rating on my beach detecting conditions scale for now.

Happy Holidays,

Thursday, November 28, 2013

11/28/13 Report - Happy Thanksgiving - Bigger Surf Predicted

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

I wasn't really going to talk about detecting today but something popped up.  Did you see the prediction for Saturday, December 12?   They are predicting up to a nine foot surf.   Of course we don't know for sure that the surf will actually be that high when the time comes.  On the other hand, it could be even higher.

We've certainly had a good November this year, especially compared to the past year or two of unremarkable beach conditions.  December could be even better.

In a day or so the blog poll will be complete and we'll be able to get some good information from that.

Some nice cold air moved into the Treasure Coast and we have a nice seasonably cool Thanksgiving.  It makes for nice brisk detecting weather.

I've mentioned in the past that my best cob day ever was back a number of years ago a day or two before Christmas when it was so cold that there was ice on some of the bridges on 95 North.  And the beach was blowing and my fingers were freezing.  At the time I wasn't as climatized to Florida weather.  That helped.

People say that your blood thins.  That isn't exactly what happens.   When a person is exposed to cold the peripheral blood vessels constrict and the blood redistributes from the extremities to the core where it is kept warmer.  A person who does not experience much cold seems to lose that adaptive response to cold over time.  I learned that when I conducted biofeedback research in the old days.

Anyhow, what was on my mind this morning is Thanksgiving.  I was reminded of a time when I went to a hospital to visit someone.   As I approached the hospital, the automatic doors popped open and two people with bent distorted bodies emerged in their electronic wheel chairs which they were controlling with a joy stick.  It seemed to be difficult for them given that their hands and arms were contorted in a painful looking way.   But what caught my attention most was the fact that they both had big beautiful smiles.  That reminded me that it is possible to be happy under difficult circumstances, and also, to be unhappy in fortunate circumstances.  The difference is attitude.  That is why today I'd suggest a little mental detecting.  Yes I said mental detecting.

I don,t mean ESP or anything like that.  What I mean is looking inward and detecting those attitudes that contribute to or inhibit success.  A cheerful optimistic attitude not only tends to make a person happier, it also contributes to success.

But today the one attitude that I wanted to mention most is thankfulness.  It is good to be thankful, but even better to express it.

I am thankful for much.  I have two good working arms, legs, hands and feet, and a head that works fairly well.  I didn't really earn that.  It was a gift.

I had parents that faithfully did their best for me.  And that was very good.

I wasn't born in a third world country.  I don't have to constantly struggle for the basic necessities of life.  I grew up in humble circumstances, but always had much more than I needed.

None of that can I say I really earned or deserved any more than most people that don't have it all.

To sum it up, I'm thankful and hope you are just as blessed and thankful today.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

11/27/13 Report - Treasure Coast Beach Detecting Conditions Downgraded,Trains and Times

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Shells at the Water's Edge
The wind was blowing out of the West this afternoon.  The surf was pretty flat, although there were some nicely formed but small waves.

The past couple of days I told you about buried shell piles.  Those shell piles were uncovered to some extent today.

Where I was, the sand bar had also separated from the beach at places.   There were plenty of shells both along the shore and on the West side of the sand bar.

I enjoyed actually seeing the shell piles that I knew were there even though in the past they were buried under a little sand.  They still held some aluminum bits.  I suspect there will be some EOs found now and perhaps a few spikes.

I'd also inspect shell piles for ceramics, sea glass, artifacts or fossils.

After seeing the beach today I'm going to downgrade my beach detecting conditions rating to a 1, as I suggested yesterday that I would probably be doing soon.

I don't see much hope of conditions improving again for a while.  At least we had some good hunting for a while.  It was long over due.

Below is a quick video clip showing the sand bar, separated from the beach by a small dip.  You can also see the shells collected on part of the bar and along the beach.

It was nice out there today.  To bad detecting conditions won't be better for the holiday.

Engine 30 Steaming Through Old Fort Pierce.

I don't know about you, but the Christmas season always makes me think of trains.  This blog is more about ships than trains, but I have a fondness for trains that goes way back to when my father bought and set up a huge Lionel train layout for me one Christmas when I was still a very small child.
I now realize what I had no idea of then - that it must have cost him about a months wages in those days.

That brings me back to Thanksgiving.  Many things have been done for us that we don't even know about or appreciate at the time.  Give it some thought.

The photo above is from the Florida State Archives which is one good resource for research.  If you look close, you might be able to figure out exactly where the scene is located.

We are getting a good number of votes on the blog poll.  That will make for some good results.  Thanks for participating.

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

11/26/13 Report - Shipwreck Spike Found, Wallet Returned, Gold Coin in the Pot and More

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

As you probably know, I like to celebrate firsts, and we've had some lately.  Well this is Michael E's first shipwreck spike find.

Congratulations Michael!

For the ninth consecutive year, someone has deposited a gold coin in a Salvation Army kettle.

For those who have found FEC lead seals, here is a web site on railroadiana that shows a sealer that was used to make lead seals.

Ive shown a few lead FEC seals in this blog in the past.   The web site on railroadiana also shows other interesting railroad items you might find interesting.

A homeless man found a wallet in a trash can at an Atlanta hotel and searched until he found where the owner was staying and returned it.

Now the hotel where the person was staying wants to find the homeless man and reward him.  Here is the link for that nice Thanksgiving story.

I didn't get out since yesterday morning to see what is going on at the beach, but my bet is that conditions did not improve.  I'm expecting a beach conditions rating downgrade very soon.

According to the surfing web sites the wind is out of the south now.  That seems like what I see out of the window.

The surf will be decreasing on the Treasure Coast for a day or two and then increase a little again, but only a little.  I don't see anything right now that would make me expect an improvement in beach detecting conditions anytime soon.

Unless I'm surprised by something, I'd expect a conditions rating downgrade any day now.

Happy hunting,

Monday, November 25, 2013

11/25/13 Report - Reales Found on the Treasure Coast and Beach Detecting Conditions.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

A two-reale and two one-reales.
Found on the Treasure Coast.
I went out this morning and was disappointed by what I saw.  Despite the strong north wind yesterday the water didn't get up high enough to wash away any sand.  Very disappointing.

There were two area where there were signals on the beach, but they were signals from thin pieces of old aluminum.  One area was with the sea weed below the old partially refilled cut and the other was down by the water with the buried shells.

I always recommend digging junk targets.  One good reason is to remove them, but another good reason is to get an idea of where all kinds of things are located, and at the same time you can develop a mental map of the beach profile.

It is not insignificant to find out where targets such as aluminum have been deposited.  That is part of the picture.

The wind was coming so hard from the North yesterday I was really hoping for better beach conditions than what I saw, but I only saw one beach so maybe I missed the good spot for the day.

From what I can tell, it hasn't happened yet (as of this morning).

The wind has changed and is now coming in almost directly from the East.  I'm starting to think we won't have any improvement in beach conditions at least until the cold front comes through.

I'm definitely not going to upgrade my beach conditions rating yet.  I'm stuck on a 2 for now, and that is a low 2.

I need to look around at some other beaches when I find time.

One reader sent in photos of these reales that he found last Thursday.   The one that shows the cross in the photo very clearly appears to be a Mexican minted cob.  They are all 1715 Fleet cobs.

The same person also recovered an olive jar shard encrusted with an iron object, a small ballast stone, and two pieces of lead hull patches with canvas markings present.   Maybe we'll get to see some photos of them too.

Really nice finds!  Thanks much for sharing.

The blog poll is progressing nicely.  It is always nice to know what people have found.   It helps put it all into perspective.  What your chances are, etc.   It also helps me validate my beach conditions ratings. 

When I find get a better idea of how many items were found I get an idea if my rating might have been too low, too high or right on.  That helps me be more accurate with my ratings.  I think it will be interesting to compare the number of finds this month to the number found back after Sandy.

Thanks for participating in the poll.

It seems to me that the biggest treasure is perhaps a grateful soul.  

I've heard it said that the happiest person is the person who is content with least.

Anthropologists from USF were denied a permit to exhume and study the remains of boys buried at the Dozier School for Boys.  The case illustrates and interesting conflict in ethics or lack of same.

Happy hunting,

Sunday, November 24, 2013

11/24/13 Report - Indian Head Pennies and Higher Wind and Surf Predictions

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Fort Pierce Surf Predictions from Magic SeaWeed.

The wind picked up this morning on the Treasure Coast about nine o'clock.  It was blowing pretty much from the North.  That is a good thing.

Later, more like around noon, we got rain and more wind.  And the wind continued to come from the North.

The wind and surf predictions is what I'm interested in today.

According to the predictions, we're going to have something close to a seven foot surf on Monday.  If the wind continues from the North through tomorrow, there is a good chance we will see some erosion.

There has been some filling where the beaches previously eroded, so it will probably take a little time to get back to previous levels, but when and if it does, we should start seeing treasure again.

Also, the predictions are for another increase in surf again the following week again.  That has happened a few times already, and I'm not unhappy about it.

There hasn't been a lot of difference between the high and low tides lately.

I've had a 1 (poor) rating on my Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Detecting Conditions Rating Scale so much this year that November has been a welcome change.  I'm holding with a 2 rating until we get some additional improvement.

The early results on the blog poll look interesting.  If you haven't participated yet, I hope you will.

Below are a couple of recent Treasure Coast beach finds that aren't cobs or treasure coins.

Indian Head Finds.

Happy hunting,

Saturday, November 23, 2013

11/23/12 Report - NewPoll, Beach Conditions, and Research Using Old Postcards

Written by the Treasureguide for the exclusive use of

Fort Pierce Beach in the 1940s.
First off, I know there were a good number of cobs or treasure coins found this month, but I'd like to get a better idea of just how many were found and how it compares to other times when cobs were found such as after tropical storm Sandy.  In order to start collecting that information, I posted a new poll on this blog.  You'll find it to the upper left of the main page. 

I kept this poll simple, but will post additional polls in the future to help get additional details.  For example, in the future I'll ask about the denominations that were found and things like that.

I know that there are many who were happy with their finds and others who were disappointed or frustrated.  This will help everyone put it all into perspective.  It isn't easy.  There is a lot of timing to it and even some luck.

Thanks for your participation.

It has been very worthwhile keeping up with the tide charts lately.  There has been a lot of variation in the surf, with a 2 -3 foot surf being repeatedly interrupted by a 6 or 7 foot surf.  That is really good information that gives a good idea about the times when the beaches might improve.  Of course, another important factor is wind direction.

Generally, but not always, a six or higher foot surf gives a decent chance of beach improvement, depending upon other factors.   A smaller surf can also cause improvement in beach detecting conditions, but much less frequently and only if other conditions are very good.   Usually though, it does take at least a six foot surf.   An eight foot surf or higher additionally increases the probability of improved beach conditions.

You can save a lot of wasted trips by watching the surf heights and wind speed and direction.

Watch the tide charts also.  Learn to use those factors to time and strategize your detecting trips.

Fox Business will interview Kim Fisher live on Monday November 25th during the 10 o'clock hour.  Undoubtedly he'll be talking some about the Atocha and Margarita as well as the business side of treasure hunting.

I often get emails about 35 mm shell casings found along the Treasure Coast.   Those are relatively common finds, as are other WW II items such as dog tags.  Numerous dog tags have been found in the past south of the Fort Pierce inlet.

Another Old Fort Pierce Post Card.
At the top of this post is shown a picture post card of military training activities on a Fort Pierce beach back during WW II. 

Many of you know that a lot of military training took part there, but if you want to do some research, one resource is old picture postcards like the one shown above and the one shown here.

This one is a 1940s era Fort Pierce post card.   Notice the dock and boats in the foreground.  Little remains of that dock now.  

Old postcards provide one way of getting a look at the past.  And they can help you find some interesting detecting sites.

Happy hunting,

Friday, November 22, 2013

11/22/13 Report - No Improvement in Treasure Coast Beach Detecting Conditions

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Treasure Coast Beach This Morning.
I went out this morning to see if the higher surf did any good.  It didn't.  At least not where I was.

Of the two beaches I looked at, this is the best looking one.   Yet it looked no better than it has the past two days.

Again the surf only got up to the foot of the cut.  That is one important thing I wanted to see.
  The sea weed is still at the bottom of the cut.

Maybe you can tell from this photo that the beach is slightly convex.  In most places, except for a covered shell line about half way down towards the water, it was soft.  Overall, not very good.

The shell line held some old beat up pieces of aluminum.  There could possibly be something interesting in with that, but the probabilities are not very good.

The other beach that I saw looked like this one except it had no cut at all,  It just sloped gradually up to the flat dry beach.

The waves have been coming in from the East the past couple of days.  That's not good either.

Same Beach as Above.

The photo to the left is the same beach.   I can't tell exactly what it is, but from that view alone my conclusion would be that it doesn't look good.

I didn't look at many beaches, but from what I did see I feel confident that overall conditions around the Treasure Coast have not improved enough to give a 3 rating on my beach conditions rating scale.  I'll stick with a 2 for now.  Conditions still deserve more than a 1 (poor) rating.

The next couple of days the surf will be decreasing so don't expect any improvement right away.   After that though, the predictions are for an increasing surf again.  We'll have to see how that turns out.

The predicted surf out a few days could be enough to improve detecting conditions, if, and that is a big if, other factors are right.

I checked out various beach web cams such as the Sebastian Inlet web cam and didn't see anything that would change my mind.

Web Cam Looking North From Sebastian Inlet This Morning.

Here is one example, looking north towards Bon Steel.

Nothing interesting there.

In fact if all the beaches looked that bad I would be back to a 1 rating.  Fortunately there are some beaches that are slightly more promising right now.  It can be spotty.

The other night I caught a TV program on the Weather channel that I really enjoyed, Prospectors.

It is a long ways from the Treasure Coast, but it is still about treasure.  And, although I really enjoy Colorado, I've never gone gem hunting.

Here is a link to some clips from the TV show.

I think you'll enjoy it.

I'm getting the feeling that the best beach hunting is over for a little while, although there is the possibility that things will get better again.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, November 21, 2013

11/21/13 Report - Ancient Seals and Amulets, Finds on the Atocha and Margarita, and Treasure Coast Conditions.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Ancient Seals and Amulets
Illustration from the above University of Munster web site.
Link below.

Last night's high tide did nothing to improve the beach that I saw this morning.  I'd rate it a low 2 (on my 5-point scale) right now.   I still am expecting improvement, maybe tonight. 

This morning it appeared that last night's high tide barely got up to the foot of the previous cut.  It looked almost like the photo I showed yesterday.  Still a lot of sea weed.  The front beach was mostly mushy with a line of covered shells running about half way down the slope.  There was a LOT of sand out in front of the beach, which was buffering the wave energy.

It also rained this morning on and off.   I didn't take my camera out since it was raining.

I haven't seen anything yet to make me increase my beach conditions rating, but the eight foot surf is still predicted.  That is usually enough to help, but of course it also depends upon angles etc. 

Unfortunately the waves all morning have been coming almost directly from the East - not a good angle.

Another positive thing is that in another week a 5 to eight foot surf is predicted again.  It looks like we are in a pattern with a  reoccurring seven or eight foot surf almost every week.   That is a lot better than what we've had for years.

Tomorrow the surf on the Treasure Coast is supposed to start decreasing and reduce to 3 feet or so in a few days before increasing again.

Although we've been having fairly rough seas on the Treasure Coast, they've been able to keep working on the Atocha and Margarita sites.

The JB Magruder  just found a complete dagger, more EOs, spikes, musket balls, split shot and pottery on the hot trail of the Atocha.

 Captain Papo and the crew of the Dare are finding more ballast and fasteners where they recently found 10 silver coins on the trail of the Margarita.

300-400 silver bars, 100,000+ silver coins, 14 bronze cannon and gold are believed to remain on the Atocha and Margarita. 


Here is the link to the article on the found ancient seals and amulets.

That is about it today.  Keep watching to see if and when Treasure Coast beach detecting conditions improve.

Happy hunting,








Wednesday, November 20, 2013

11/20/13 Report - Beach Conditions, Higher Surf Expected Again, Citrus County Artifacts & More

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

The beach didn't look very good this morning.  There was sand filling the front beach in front of  where a nice cut used to be.  And lots of sea weed.

Here are a couple of pictures of the beach that I saw today.

In the top photo you might be able to see the convex front beach.

In the bottom photo, you can see how the cut has filled.

There were a few targets though.

The previous high tide had barely touched the foot of the cut. 

A four to six foot surf is predicted for today.  Tomorrow something more like a seven foot surf is expected.  That might be enough to improve detecting conditions again.  That could open the window of opportunity again.

Artifacts from many different time periods were dredged up as a Citrus County Spring was cleaned out.  You'll want to see this one.

An old safe given for scrap metal turns out to be loaded with gold and silver coins.

You might remember how Dan B. found and returned a couple nice rings.  I posted that story in my 5/30/13 post.  Dan submitted the story to Garrett and they published it in the Vaughan Garrett November issue.  Contratulations Dan!

If you might be interested in purchasing a used Sovereign GT for $400 contact

I'm having a few internet problems again.   That is it for today.

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

11/19/13 - Storm Melissa, Cob With Bourban Shield, Encrusted Object, and Beach Conditions

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

One-Reale Found on a Treasure Coast Beach
Here is the shield side of the one-reale that I showed a few days ago.  Approximately half of the top part of the shield is shown on this dug one-reale.

By inspecting the shield the date range of the cob can be narrowed down to a period of five years despite no date or assayer mark showing.

The cob would be minted 1715 or before because it came from a 1715 Fleet beach.

The shield is a Bourban shield with the Bourban crest covering the castle of the lower right quadrant.  That design began in 1710.  Therefore the cob most likely was minted in the range of 1710 - 1715.

Here is a picture of a four reale showing a similar shield, although the four reales was minted in 1719.  I selected this particular four-reales because it shows most of the details very clearly.

1719 Four Reales Shown for Comparison.

Since the shield on the one-reale is not real clear, I attempted to highlight some of the major details below.

Same One-Reale with Highlighted Details.
In the highlighted photo to the left, you can see the cross towards the upper left.  The three circles show where the castle and two lions are shown.

To the right of the cross, you see the vertical lines and then more to the right, the X which separates the two birds.

Below the vertical lines is the Bourban crest.  I didn't take it up quite far enough.  The three diamonds in the crest are the positions of the three fleur de lis.

My highlights are not totally accurate, but I hope that helped you more easily identify some of the features of the shield that can be seen on the cob.

Below are a couple of photos of an encrusted object dug by William M.

Encrusted Object Containing Smaller Object.
Photo by William M.

William said,

Just starting on the smallest of the three pieces on that stone.

It unfortunately is very delicate and pieces have come off.

It appears to be an earring made of silver in a lace type design with a white stone in the center.

You can see the silver (black) in the middle of this encrustation and the white stone in the middle of that.

A lot of people might miss EOs or not pay them any attention.  They can hold things though and you never know what.

It can be difficult to find out what is in an EO and just as difficult to remove it.  Sometimes it might be better to leave it embedded.

Other Larger Objects in the EO.
Photo by William M.

These appear to be round.  Maybe coins?   I don't know.  Maybe William will be able to find out.

There is a named storm in the Atlantic - Melissa.  It is already well to the north of us and headed out into the Atlantic.

Although the surf has decreased, as has my beach conditions rating (down to a 2), the prediction is for the surf to increase up to seven feet for Thursday now.

That could certainly be enough to improve conditions again, especially if the wind starts coming in from the north again, which is what is predicted.

It has been a very interesting November so far.

Again, when things calm down again, and I hope they don't, I'll conduct a poll or two to see how much was found.

Happy hunting,

Monday, November 18, 2013

11/18/13 Report - Gold Chain Find, Cash and Trophy Finds, & Treasure Coast Surf Predictions.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Gold Chain Found on the Treasure Coast by Michael E.
Photo by Michael E.

Here is a nice find by Michael E., who was detecting the towel line.

With the weather and change in beach detecting conditions, I've been focusing on the treasure beaches, but there are still modern items to be found too.

You should have a strategy when you go detecting, with two or three plans that will allow you to respond to what you see when you check out various beaches.

Don't get too narrowly focused.  Be adaptable and be ready to respond to what you see at the beach.  If conditions one place look bad for one type of detecting, have another plan.  Be ready to respond to whatever opportunities may appear.

Here are a few comments by Michael.

I did go to the treasure beaches Fredrick [Douglas] and John [Brooks] during what seemed to be peak detectorist times. Should have brought coffee and donuts. Met some great people who were genuine and some who were not. ...  Anyway no luck on detecting cobs, but the post today reminded me off my youth during weekends we were at the flea market often in palm beach, spent my candy money on "cool" coins and the 1818 one pictured is one of these. I have binders full of coins from those. Been hitting it hard, with a lot of junk, clad, 2 .50cal casings. Couldn't sleep last night went out and hit what I bought was a silver medallion and chain in the towel line. Woke up cleaned the pouch and was pleasantly surprised. 14k chain and religious trinket, in tact. ...

And here is one of the coins he talked about.

Photos by Michael E.

King Ferdinand VII, as I showed in the list of kings in my post yesterday, reigned from 1808 to 1833.

Thanks Michael, and congratulations on your finds.

A 1946 Cleveland Browns championship trophy was found in a box in a garage.

And a man found $98,000 in a desk that he purchased on Craigslist.  See what happened next.

Here is the big news for me today.

Here are the surf predictions for the Sebastian area.

Note the eight foot surf predicted for Thursday, and also for the following Monday.

We've been having some nice surf patterns.   The surf has been peaking, decreasing and then peaking again.  It has already happened at least two or three times and looks like it will happen at least once or twice again.

I usually figure a six to eight foot surf is about what is needed to do something good to the beaches.

Of course, the direction of the waves is important too.

It looks promising at this point for more good hunting.  This has already been a good season.

I'd put a 2 rating on my Treasure Coast beach conditions scale right now, and would expect that to be increased to a 3 after Thursday.

Happy hunting,

Sunday, November 17, 2013

11/17/13 Report - EO, Relocating Specific Areas, $98,000 Found, Spanish Colonial Kings

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Unidentified Encrusted Object.
Find and Photo by William M.

This encrusted object was recently found on a Treasure Coast beach near the water line by William M.

The metal objects are not ferrous, although from the photo it appears that there is rust on the stone.  William says one of the objects is silver but not a coin.

Always watch for encrusted objects.  Besides using a magnet, acid, or test pen, the detector signal can also give you an idea what metal or metals are involved.

Just the other day I detected a couple of large non-ferrous objects near the water line and was unable to retrieve them because of the rough water.  I returned the next day to see if I could get them but due to the change in direction of the wind and waves that area had accumulated more sand, and I was unable to find them again.

Objects that you can not recover can often be retrieved another day when beach conditions and the surf change.  Make a good mental map of that area of the beach.

I was able to relocate and retrieve one other smaller object that I wasn't able to get the day before.  It was higher on the beach.  I knew exactly where I located it the day before and what it sounded like.  I also knew how the water would probably move it.   I went to the same area, and was able to find it where I detected it a day earlier.  It turned out to be nothing significant, but at least I now know what it was.

Of course there is some possibility that it was not the exact same object but something in the same location that sounded the same, but I think it was the same object that I left the day before.  There were very few targets on that area of the beach, and it sounded the same.

I hate to leave detected objects not knowing what they are.  The curiosity gets to me.

Beside forming a good three dimensional mental map of the area to be searched again in the future, mark the area well.   Some people use stakes.  I don't particularly like to use stakes.  They often get knocked over or disappear.  I prefer stones or more permanent natural or man-made landmarks.

Use more than one marker because not only is there the possibility that one marker will get moved either by nature or man, but a single marker is not enough unless it is sitting on top of the area of interest.

If you try to locate a spot by using a single marker such as a fence post, tree or telephone poll, you won't be very accurate.   Use at least two markers for each of at least two intersecting lines, for example one tree stump and maybe something like a telephone pole that lines up directly behind the stump.

Of course one line will not identify a spot.  You'll need another intersecting line.

With practice you can use natural or man made objects to accurately identify a spot even if the beach does change.

Some detectors now provide good GPS coordinates so you can use that to relocate a spot on the beach.

Besides relocating a previously detected but unrecovered object, the same technique can be used to find old hot spots or whatever.

A good three dimensional mental map of the beach can be very helpful.   Get to know your beaches.  Analyze how a beach is changing and where sand is accumulating or being removed.

The other day I mentioned a shell pile that was covered by sand.  Notice the layers of sand and shells.  Make that a part of your mental map.

Generally, make sure to detect areas where the sand is being removed.  They will tend to produce more good objects than areas where sand is accumulating.  There are always exceptions, but you can improve your chances of success by going with the probabilities.

It is one thing to go out and find modern jewelry on a regular basis, but locating the old stuff is much more difficult and depends much more on the right beach conditions.

Often you won't be able to find a date on a Spanish Colonial cob.  If you can find the king listed in the legend on the cob, that can help you get a date range for the cob.   Here are the kings and when they reigned.
  • Philip III, 1598-1621
  • Philip IV, 1621-1665
  • Charles II, 1665-1700
  • Philip V, 1700-1746
  • Luis I, 1724
  • Fernando VI, 1746-1759
  • Carlos III, 1759-1788
  • Carlos IV, 1788-1808
  • Jose Napoleon, 1808-1813
  • Ferdinand VII, 1808-1833

I'll leave my beach conditions rating at a 2 through Wednesday.  Beach conditions are not as good as they were.  The wind has shifted so that it is coming from the southeast, but there will still be some left-overs to be found.

The surf will increase again up to seven feet or so by Thursday, and the wind will come out of a more Northerly direction again.  I'd expect improving conditions by then again.

We haven't had a low low-tide for quite some time.

Happy hunting,

Saturday, November 16, 2013

11/16/13 Report - Beach Detecting Conditions, CSS Georgia, Detectorists Working With Archaeologists at Montpelier

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

The beach didn't look very good today.  We've had some pretty good hunting lately.  The wind changed and is coming from the southeast today, which is not usually good for beach detecting conditions.  There was a lot of sea weed on the beaches that I saw today.

I'm going to drop my beach conditions rating from a 3 to a 2.   The beaches that I saw today were generally building.

Detectorists from around the country have volunteered to help archaeologists at Montpelier.  Detectorists who volunteer will receive instruction on how finds are conserved, cataloged, and curated. Then they go out to the woods to locate historic sites such a slave quarters, mills, or homes on the 2,700 acres of Montpelier.

Here is the link for more about that.

This is the kind of thing I've encouraged in this blog in the past.  Amateur archaeologists and detectorists have made a lot of very significant discoveries, and detectorists can help preserve history for us all.  They are out in the field all the time and can be the eyes of the academics and professionals.  

The cobs that I've shown in the past few days are all under very much under weight.  That shows how items like that corrode and deteriorate while they are on the beach, and in time they will completely disappear.  If they aren't found and saved now, they will be lost to history completely. But we can save these items that have no context and would never be a part of an archaeological study.  Without being found and saved by detectorists they will completely disappear.

The last cob that I showed had lost a good thirty percent of its material and one side had lost most of the detail.  Another cob that I showed a few days ago had lost over two thirds of it's original material and was barely identifiable.  That is why they must be recovered and saved now.

Here is a quick video clip showing the surf this morning on one Treasure Coast beach.

U.S. Navy divers recovered a 64-square foot section of the Civil War ironclad warship CSS Georgia from the Savannah River.
Here is the link.

On the Treasure Coast we will have a somewhat reduced surf through Tuesday.  Wednesday and Thursday the surf will increase to 6 or 7 feet again.  Hopefully we'll get more of a North wind with that too.  If we do get the north wind along with the increased surf, the beach conditions will probably improve again.

Like I said, I'll be doing a poll when this all calms down so we'll find out just how much has been found.

Happy hunting,

Friday, November 15, 2013

11/15/13 Report - Another Find and Current Beach Detecting Conditions

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Found One Reale 11/15

The one reale to the left was found on the Treasure Coast today.   It is a little healthier than those I've been seeing.  It weights 2.1 grams.  Still very much under weight for a one reale, but that is what I've been seeing from beach cobs.

A one reale should be 3.4 grams, so it has lost about one third of its weight.

Maybe I'll get some better photos and detail later.

The big news for me is that cobs are still being found on the Treasure Coast.  And it looks like there will be more this month, which has already been a good month - one of the best we've had for quite some time.  As I've said, November has traditionally been one of the better months for detecting on the Treasure Coast.

This morning the cut that I showed yesterday was about a foot less high.  It had filled some.  The beach in front of the cut had a fairly steep slope to it.  Some of it was firmer than at other spots.

Near the front beach there was a shell pile along the swash area, but you could not see the shells.  The shell pile was covered by a few inches of sand.  The shell pile contained some larger non-ferrous targets that could not be removed because of the surf.

The surf is going to be decreasing for a few days down to around 3 feet and then increasing again up to around seven feet.  As long as this continues there is a chance things will continue to improve. The high tides are still fairly high, as are the low tides.

There are a lot of places to check out.  I'll keep a 3 rating on my Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Detecting Conditions Scale for now.

Below are some shots from a day or two ago of Treasure Coast beaches sent in by Joan T.
Thanks Joan!

Walton Rocks.
Tiger Shores
Blind Creek

Fletcher Beach.
As you can see, different beaches are different.  Some nicely cut, some not cut and some scalloped. I was a little slow in getting these posted, so you might see some changes, but it will give you an idea.

A needle in a haystack is nothing to finding cobs on the beach.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, November 14, 2013

11/14/13 Report - One Detectorist Finds His First Cobs and Beach Detecting Conditions.

Written by the TreaureGuide for the exclusive use of

Recent Finds by Ian A.
Photo submitted by Ian.
You might remember Ian A. who found the British coaked sheave.  That was one of my favorite all time finds that I was able to post in this blog.  (See my 3/11/10 post.)

Congratulations are due!  Ian found his first cobs.  Here they are.

Here is what Ian had to say.

Been along time since I found anything worthy of reporting.  

I was finally able to get in on the action, and after several years of looking found my first cobs.  

Its funny reading your posts the last few days and the tone I'm reading into them is that you must be hearing a lot of frustration from people writing in. Lord knows I have been there.  Hunting the tides in the middle of the night, in tropical storms, hunting below awesome cuts, and still finding no cobs.  Then getting the added salt of seeing other people making finds.  I spent a lot of time researching,  and studying sources like your blog..trying to find the keys to success.

Now that I finally found my cob it is clear that all the information was there and I wonder how much earlier my success might have come if I had just applied it a little better Ha!  imagine that!

Anyway the rectangular cob was my 1st and weighs in at a whopping .4 grams.  The other came a few days later and bends the scales at .7 grams.

... They look like Mexican crosses to me and I think I can make out a M on the front of the rectangular one but that's about it....

As always thanks for taking the time to do the blog.


Thanks for sharing Ian, I always like to celebrate first finds.  Congratulations.

I've never seen one eaten through like that.  Wonder what caused that?

They are in the same weight range as others that I've been seeing from the beaches.

I've not had internet service for a couple days and just got it back a little while ago, so I'll try to catch up a little now with a brief post.  I'll try to get back with more later.

Yesterday a cold front came through and the wind increased up to 25 or 35 miles an hour and came from the northeast.  Today the wind switched and the waves were coming in pretty much from the East.  I think detecting conditions would have been better if the waves were hitting more from the North.

The photos below were taken this morning.  As you can see, I saw a cut that was about 4 to 5 feet high.

Treasure Coast Beach This Morning.

Same Beach This Morning.

While the surf on the Treasure Coast was up to near 7 feet today, the surf will decrease a good bit tomorrow and for a few more days.

The exciting thing for me is that in a few more days we'll be getting more surf at seven feet again. If we continue to get a good high surf, I'd expect conditions to improve even if it isn't obvious.
Sand in front of the beaches will be stirred up and moved.   

I'd like to see cuts that go back farther on the beach and also closer to the water level.

Some beaches are now eroded while others are not.  You have to check around.

I'm going to keep a 3 rating on my Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Detecting Conditions Scale.  Could be more like a 2.5.   

I have photos of more beaches from Joan T. that I'll post when I can.  Thanks Joan.

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

11/12/13 Report - Very Small Half Reale, How to Recover Targets In a Rushing Surf, Million Dollar Items

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

As I've been saying, cobs have been found.  As I said, I even heard of an escudo find.  I like to hear about finds and receive pictures of finds.  It helps me do a better job with the blog.

At one spot this week the cobs that were found were small and light.  The one below on the left, which I showed before, is about a half a gram.  The one on the right is a really small one and weighs even less.  It is also a half reale, or should I say fragment, and should weigh more like 1.7 grams.

Cob Shown a Couple of Days Ago With Another Smaller Cob
Found at The Same Beach

On the small one, in the top photo you can see the middle of the cross -  mostly what in the picture is seen as the vertical arm.

In the bottom photo, the other side of the small cob shows very little detail, but you can see what appears to be part of the bottom part of the S on the bottom part of the cob.

I mentioned before the round dot to the right of the S on the other cob (left), and I think I've read about a dot like that before but can't find any pictures of any similar cobs right now.  Does anyone know more about the circle?  If so I'd like to hear from you.

You probably know my position on small finds.  When you are getting small items, that is a good thing, because it tells you that you are probably not missing much.  I always say, focus on the smalls and the bigs will take care of themselves.

The smalls give off signals that are similar to deep items too.  So if you are finding small objects, chances are good that you are also finding deeper objects.  The signals for both, of course, will not be as loud as for big or surface targets.

As I've said before, when you are at the right place at the right time, most objects, especially coins, will be found near the surface.  I've discussed that before so I won't go into it more now.

A small item like the item on the right can slip through the holes of a scoop.  One of the dangers of working close to or in rough water is that when an item does slip through a hole or out of the front of a scoop, moving water can easily wash it away, never to be found again.  As a result, if you get a signal from what appears to be a small item, take extra care in recovery.  Don't let a wave wash it away.

Here are some things to do if you are working in an area like that.

Quickly pinpoint the object precisely and be ready to quickly put your foot on top of the object to prevent it from being washed away.

When you get the object in your scoop, consider moving up the slope and away from the water before sifting.

Keep sweeping over the object to make sure to it is still in place as the water rushes over it.

If you miss it with your first scoop, or if it washes through or out of your scoop, quickly try to relocate it before it washes farther away.  Track it as it moves.

Watch the way the water is moving items so you know which direction an item will move if it does get moved by the water.  Sometimes items will move up the slope, at other times down the slope, and at times either north or south.  Watch how the water is moving items before you get a signal, so you know which direction they'll be moved by the water before it happens.

Light thin objects such as aluminum will be moved farther more quickly by the water.  It won't take much water action for you to lose something like that in moving water.  If you know how the water is moving objects, you have a good chance of recovering it anyhow.

It is not a bad idea to toss a penny in the moving water before you start and see how it moves.  Then you'll have a good idea which way a lost target will move.

People pay a lot of attention to a lot of things, but one thing that is very much over looked that I have talked about it the effect of the size and shape of the object.  Coin shaped objects, for example, present a lot of surface area to the sand, and do not sink as quickly, as for example, rings.  They also present little vertical surface area to the rushing water.

Everybody tends to talk about weight, but shape is just as important in determining how objects move in water.  Take a look at my 8/5/13 report to read about an experiment proving that.

Bejeweled Faberge Figurine Worth over $5 million.

A Faberge hardstone figure was found last summer during a search of the attic of a Rhinebeck, N.Y., house included in an estate. A small, plain box was opened and inside was the rare carved figure sitting on silk lining labeled with the Faberge emblem. A December 1934 bill of sale from Hammer Galleries was also found. Armand Hammer bought many Russian treasures with the help of the Soviet government, which needed cash in the 1930s. The 7-inch-high figure of the bodyguard to Empress Alexandra was made of jasper, sapphires, nephrite, sardonyx, purpurine, gold, enamel and cachalong (a type of opal). It was estimated at $500,000 to $800,000 but sold for a record $5,980,000. The buyer was a Russian jeweler who buys for his store and for private clients. The auction was held Oct. 26, 2013, by Stair Galleries in Hudson, N.Y.

The above article is from

Also from

Close to 1,400 modernist artworks "confiscated" by the Nazis have been discovered in Munich. A tax collector's search for an 80-year-old man's assets raised questions, and the artworks were found in a dark room in his apartment. Some have already been identified as being among 16,000 known pictures confiscated as "degenerate art" by the Nazis. The newly discovered pieces, by Matisse, Picasso, Chagall, Klee and other famous artists, are now being studied by experts. The 80-year-old, who inherited the paintings, drawings, prints and lithographs from his father--an art collector friendly with Nazi leaders--may have sold a few pieces to cover his living expenses.  Finding the original owners and returning the works of art will be a major legal problem.

I'm expecting an increasing surf the next couple of days, maybe up to seven feet again.  That could open up the windows of opportunity again.

Keep watching the surf predictions.  Besides the size of the surf, watch the wind and wave direction and the tides.  All of that put together will help you get an idea about when it might be a good time to check out the beach.  Of course, I'll also try to keep an eye on things and keep you informed.

I'll be posting a poll before long to see how much was found this November, which I think was the best month of detecting that we've had on the Treasure Coast for quite a while.  I'll bet that more was found this month than last year when Sandy passed the Treasure Coast.

If you appreciate this blog, contribute.  Send pictures, comments, questions, or whatever.  I try to read all emails and am always glad to have your participation.  

Some have asked why I don't allow comments in the blog.  The reason is that I have a hard time keeping up with them.  People respond to things posted years ago and I can't keep up with it all.   I might try screened comments someday.  If I can handle it, then I'll keep it.

Happy hunting,

Monday, November 11, 2013

10/11/13 Report - Veteran's Day, Early St. Lucie County Settlement Finds & More Surf Coming

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Thanks to all the Veterans.

The Wooden Minesweeper My Departed Father Crossed Both Oceans On As a Teenager During WW II.
Their motto:  Where the fleet goes, we have been.

Stoneware Ink Bottle & Bone Handle Knife
Photo and Finds by Kenneth H.

Before the beach got stirred up I posted part of an email from Kenneth H. in which he told us about his experiences at early St. Lucie settlement sites.

Here is a photo of one of his finds and what he said about them.

... out of the dump came three complete stoneware items. 1) the ink w/ bone-handled pocket knife fused to its side by what appears to be pitch (pine tar) for sealing roofs and boats. The second two items, not photographed was a shallow, round cold cream-like container complete with a cover. The third item was a stoneware ale, beer or ginger-beer type of a bottle with "1848" molded into the side near its base.

Here is some more from Kenneth that you'll find interesting.

...2014 marks the 45th year I have hunted the treasure coast. I recall the old restaurant north of the inlet with a single food bar. Wagner's Spanish relics, swords and such were mounted on the wall behind the cook. Saw it first in 1969 when it was free to camp anywhere along the inlet, and we did just that. Wish it could have been kept that way and wish beach development never happened between Vero & Sebastian. Once upon a time, it was all so beautiful and the beaches were quite isolated.

Thanks for sharing Kenneth.

As eager as we are on the Treasure Coast to see a little storm activity, we need to remember how devastating storms can be.   Here is a link to a story and some photos of the super storm that hit the Philippines.

Here are some of the highlights of the most recently completed SedwickCoins auction from receive via email from

* Part II of the New England Collection of Brazilian gold coins, its key piece being a 1750 Bahia 3200 Reis that sold for a record price of $49,938.

* Over a dozen round "Royal" cobs that sold for as much as 5 figures each, plus an 8-reales "Heart" that sold for $56,400, the first of several lots that rallied a round of applause from the attendees.

* A fantastic showing in gold cobs with strong prices for high-quality Mexico and Lima pieces, including a 1703 Lima 8 escudos that sold for $47,000.

* A complete sellout in shipwreck ingots, coins and artifacts, featuring a bronze cannon that sold for $49,938, a gold rosary that sold for $71,700, and a gold "dragon whistle" (Captain's badge of office) that sold for $49,938.

* The largest-ever single offering of silver coins from colonial Santo Domingo, which saw an unprecedented level of participation from serious numismatists with multiple decades of experience and knowledge.

Please don't write and ask me where you should go or where things are being found.  I tell you as much as I can in this blog without being unfair to others.  There are several things that I don't want to happen. For one thing, I don't want everyone running out to the same beach.   i was told one time after mentioning a beach, that it looked like I-95 because there were so many detectorists running up and down it.

Another thing is I don't want to be unfair to those who found sites on their own.   Third, I don't know all the sites where things are being found anyhow, and I wouldn't want to send you one place when there might be others that are better.  And fourth, I don't want to take ALL of the challenge of the hunt out of it for you.

I give you a lot of information and clues.  Use them to the max.  Read carefully, use your head, and make a your best effort.   But you have to put it together and make it happen yourself, othewise you won't get the full satisfaction of success.  There are a few who lucked out early, but most o fus had to work for a while before we had any success.  That is the way it usually is.

It is now time to take advantage of the decreasing surf.  You'll be able to work farther down at low tide.  If you've already worked the main treasure beaches, think about looking around, working the secondary sites or the border areas.

The surf is decreasing for a couple of days, but increasing again Wednesday and up to seven feet again Thursday, if the predictions are correct.  That is as high as last week when the beaches starte to produce.  So it is possible we will have a repeat.  Of course it is also possible that it won't work out as well, depending upon other factors, such as the direction of wind and waves.

Another thing to notice in the predictions is there will be another decrease in the surf after Thursday, but then another increase up to seven feet again in a few more days.  Again, that is if the predictions are correct.

We've already had a nice period of higher surf and these predictions for repeated high surf is encouraging.  There could be a cumulative effect.

Happy hunting,