03 October 2011

Metal Detecting Post #48 - Recovery of the Month - September 2011

The bits of history one can find metal detecting continues to amaze and fascinate me. Take the example below. Civil War soldiers often found themselves with lots of time on their hands. Bored minds can become quite creative. The carved .69 caliber 3 ringer was no doubt created by some soldier, bored to death, awaiting the next march or, perhaps, on the eve of some battle. An acorn that never grew to a tree, but did survive the war to tell a story.

Details here.


Mark Snell said...

14th Army Corps insignia? Was it found where the Army of the Cumberland operated?

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Hello Mark. All I know is what the gentleman who found it posted: "a C.S.A. Cavalry Camp" somewhere in Tennessee. Quite a unique piece of history. Are you interested in insignia? Some time next month, I'm going to Maryland to interview someone who's been relic hunting since the 1960's. I'm doing an article for one of the metal detecting magazines. He has quite a collection of insignia as that is his passion. He told me he once followed (with a MD) bulldozers into part of the Chancellorsville Battlefield (on private property of course).

Mark Snell said...

I know a detectorist who found a Fourthenth AC insignia in Georgia, but he sold it for a hefty sum, something I'd never consider doing unless I had to put food on the table, and even then I'd really have to think about it. I imagine the Reb who carved this one didn't have the 14th AC in mind, he probably was just copying the seed of an oak tree. A neat find nevertheless.

The video you posted on Longshank's camp was very interesting. I wonder how those guys got permission to dig-- British law concerning metal detecting is much more stringent than ours. I used to get all excited just digging up a minie ball; I can't imagine uncovering a heraldic item from 1298.

The oldest thing I ever detected was a fired musket ball from the Battle of Blenheim (1704) in Bavaria, way back when I was a young lieutenant stationed in Germany in 1979. I tried metal detecting near my house in Stuttgart, but those were the days when detectors with discriminators were fairly new (and my detector didn't have one), and I just got tired of digging up fragments from WWII flak shells, which seemingly covered every square foot of open ground!


Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Yes, selling my finds would be a last resort on my part. I want to pass them on. It is indeed a very neat mind.

Hunting in the British Isles would be a dream come true. Maybe one day.

I believe the oldest item I've found to date was that bodkin in my last video, circa 1730 - 1770.

BTW, I saw you article in the recent Hallowed Ground - very informative. I enjoyed reading it.