Sunday, August 23, 2015

8/23/15 Report - How Did The Escudos End Up Where They Were Found. A Few Thoughts. Tropical Storm Danny.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

One of the Cobs Recently Found By the Captiana Crew.

Just a picture of one of the escudos on display at the press release Thursday.

The press release was at Captain Hiram's Resort in Sebastian.   The 1715 Fleet Queens Jewels guys talked about their recent finds and their experiences. There were a lot of TV cameras.  You probably saw clips from the release on the local news.  I heard one video clip from the release on the radio Friday morning when I was in the car.

There are some guys in the metal detecting community that try to make it all about themselves.  For them it is all me, me, me.   That is how they sound.   You know the type.   The P. T. Barnums of metal detecting.  Those are the same guys that have to resort to dirty tricks to sabotage other detectorists.  Unfortunately we have some of those.

That is the exact opposite of what I saw at the press release Thursday.  The Capitana guys are treasure rock stars, but they don't act like it.  They are some of the nicest guys you'll ever meet.

There was no arrogance.  No bragging.  There was no, We were successful because we were smarter and better than everybody else.  They told their stories with humility.  I wouldn't mind if all treasure hunters and detectorists were like them.  It would do us good.  Those are the kind of guys that you like to root for.  I know they'd be rooting for you too.


I've shown a lot of treasure in the last few days.  I showed gold cobs of different sizes and types, and I showed a video of the guys finding those gold cobs.

There is a lot to take in and think about.  It is time to play Sherlock Holmes.  Let's see if there is anything we can learn.

Let's start with the cobs.  What did you notice?  One thing I noticed is the remarkable lack of scratches or other damage.  I didn't inspect the escudos carefully when I did get to see some in person.  Mostly I've seen photos, and that just isn't the same.

Gold is a relatively soft metal.  It can be easily scratched, yet the escudos seem to show very little damage of any kind.  Not even many scratches.

From the video we can see they were found among rocks, and they were found near shore where the breakers crash. You might think that combination would bang them up.  But you don't see much of that.

If you watched the video you also saw that many were found in crevices and cracks and dips where they would be protected.  Any covering sand would protect them too.

Yesterday I showed an escudo that was lodged in a crack of a rock.  And in the video we see that some of those pot holes were maybe two, three or four feet deep, and sometimes the space between the rocks was very narrow.  Once they got into a place like that they would be well protected.

Divers Finding Escudos In Dips Between Rocks.
Source: Video provided by Jonah Martinez.
Over the years I've found a lot of clad coins in the shallow water that were bent like those shown in the picture here.

Penny and Nickle Bent As Found

The picture shows just a couple examples of coins that I've found bent up, and some were bent almost in half.

If you try to bend a coin like that you'll find out how difficult it is.  That takes a lot of force.

I don't know exactly how it happens, but all the bent ones that I've found, if I correctly recall, were found near the water's edge or in shallow water. They were also found in areas where there were a lot of loose coral rocks.  I would see the rocks piled up at the edge of the water at times.  Sometimes you'd see them and other times not.  I'm sure the rocks got moved around, and sometimes piled up, and other times buried.  My guess is that the coins got trapped between rocks in rock piles and got bent when the rocks got shifted and buried.  That is my best theory at this point.

I see no evidence of anything like that on the recently recovered gold cobs - not even scratches.  What we see in the video is large rocks that would not move.

It appears to me, rightly or wrongly, that the gold cobs were well protected protected during the three hundred years they were lost,  Even hurricanes failed to damage them.

I'm guessing that these escudos did not drop immediately onto uncovered rocks when they were initially lost. I think either they were lost on the beach or in the water, but on sand, and then gradually settled as the sand moved.

There is the possibility that they were once in bags or boxes.  I know of no evidence of that though.

I think they gradually settled down into the rock crevices. Once covered by sand, even just a little, they would be well protected.

It is also possible that they didn't settled all of the way into the dips until sand was moved by the blowers. That is a possibility I want to look into. I have some experiments planned.

Once coins settle into the cracks and crevices and pot holes in the rocks, I think there is very little chance that even a hurricane would move them onto the beach again.  Those would certainly be protected from most, if not all violent water movement,  And they wouldn't move until the covering of sand was removed first.

If the escudos were lost on the beach or in deeper water or on sand over top of the rocks, they could settle deeper when the sand was moved.  I believe it would be possible for cobs to be lifted and even thrown, but in my opinion that would be very unusual and unlikely if they were protected by narrow crevices and deep pot holes.

There is still a lot to learn about how those escudos got to where they were found, but I think we may have at least started the journey.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

There are a lot of variables, for sure.  It seems near impossible to figure out all of this, but in the past year or two I've learned a heck of a lot that took me a few decades to learn.  For example, it took me a long time to understand and appreciate what I call "trigger points" and "drop points" and how that determines how items are sifted and sorted. For me, that was a big leap, and it just occurred in the past couple of years, and only after decades.


Tropical Storm Danny
Tropical storm Danny is now headed towards the Dominican Republic.  As you can see things are heating up in the Atlantic.  There are three there other disturbances out there.

Danny will soon be downgraded to a depression.  I don't think it will amount to much by the time it gets close to us.

Happy hunting,