Monday, September 26, 2016

9/26/16 Report - Old Wells As Signs and Treasure Troves. This Mornings Beaches. Three Atlantic Disturbances.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Treasure Coast Surf This Morning Before Low Tide

Yesterday I showed the marker for the old Spanish well at Anclote River Park.  That kind of thing provides a good clue about the history of an area.  People always need a good source of water, and seaside camps as well as old homesteads will often have one.  They exist all the way along the Florida coast, including the Treasure Coast and some of the 1715 Fleet camp sites.

Wells aren't always obvious.  Over the years they can get filled and covered over.  Sometimes all that remains is a depression in the ground surrounded by vegetation or a few stones or bricks.

Wells can be nothing more than dug holes or they can be lined with stones, bricks, barrels, boards or even a hollow log.

One of the older wells that was used by early explorers was on Key Biscayne.  That is one of those that in recent years looked like little more than a depression surrounded by lush vegatation.  I think you can probably still see it today not far from the lighthouse.

There was one on Pigeon Island that I showed a day or so ago.

Two have been identified at the survivor camp site by the McClarty Museum.  One was a barrel well.  The other was lined with timber. Kip Wagner told about how he found one when he noticed his dog drinking water from a shallow depression.

Below is an illustration of a barrel well as published in the FINAL TECHNICAL REPORT WELLS IN DELAWARE: ALTERNATIVE MITIGATION FOR THE POLK TENANT SITE (N05221, 7NC-F-111) prepared for the Delaware Department of Transportation.

Barrel Well Illustration
Source: deldot link below.
That is a good article and provides a lot of information about history and wells.

Here is the link.


Not only can wells be signs of camps or homesteads, but they can also be treasure troves.  The water and sediment at the bottom of a well will preserve items.  Items can be dropped acdidentally into a well, but when a well is abandoned it might become a trash pit.

Here is an excerpt from a good article about wells at Jamestown settlement from Popular Archaeology entitled History in the Wells.

...Consider, for example, the discoveries made in recent years during excavation of an early 17th century well located inside what was identified as the northern corner of the James Fort. Here, archaeologists retrieved artifacts that included a halberd, Scottish pistol, a leather 17th century style shoe, a nearly intact hammer, a rapier hilt, iron pike head, a lead plaque reading "Yames Towne", and two mostly whole Bartman jugs, ceramic pieces common to the time period. Many of the finds, such as the wooden shoe and halberd, were made at least in part of organic material such as leather and wood. They were preserved in remarkable condition, almost as if they had been tossed into the well yesterday....

Here is the link.


A Couple Cuts On The Treasure Coast This Morning.
The above cuts were over a foot high.  Nothing special though.  The sand in front was mushy.  I'm sure this happened yesterday when we had a slightly higher surf.

Exposed Rocks Near the Waterline This Morning Near Low Tide.
This one area has been eroding over the past month or two.  It is probably only because of a beach replenishment project to the north, which is also eroding too.

There were some coins and a few older items around this location.  Some were heavily encrusted.

This area isn't anything special now, but it is an area that can rapidly improve if there is more erosion at the same spot.  Some areas have a lot of sand and will require a lot of erosion before they become productive, while other areas are much closer to becoming productive.

We now have three disturbances in the Atlantic again, but no important changes.

Happy hunting,