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War Of 1812 In Alta California? Please Be Seated As This Story Unfolds...


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18 hours ago, F350Platinum said:

Nice finds Tom and Cal! It is interesting to see that old a button show up there. Shows us Easterners got nothing on ya. 😀

Those buckles could be silver or chrome plated brass. I've dug plenty of nickel plated brass here too.

Good times. 👍 

You could certainly be right.  They sure screamed like silver, but they're not marked.

20 hours ago, JCR said:

Sounds like a fun time. I often clear brush or mow hoping to find some goods. Sometimes it works out. You gotta try what you can on a good history site.

We've had good success doing this at a mid-1800's stage stop, we're actually to the point that you have to clear brush if you want new dirt to detect.  If I were wealthy I'd hire a landscaping crew to remove all the sagebrush under the guise of "fire protection" haha

17 hours ago, Elbert said:

Great finds guys. Congrats.  Darn tracker doesn't seem to be working.

Thanks El.  BTW according to my notes the tracker you ordered is the basic model, if you want to track Tom, you'll need to upgrade to the Deluxe model 🙂

13 hours ago, Valens Legacy said:

Those are some nice finds the two of you found, a lot of history in the digs.

Good luck on your next hunt.

Thank you, every high conductor there could be "the one" haha   Love digging the earliest history we can reach.

8 hours ago, strick said:

Nice work fellas and thanks for sharing. Do you guys ever find those button hooks? Just curious I got one the other day and did not realize what it was as I had not found one before. 

strick

Thanks, it's nice to get a out a little.  I've never found a button hook, maybe Tom has.  Kind of surprising as I'm sure they were in high use, but maybe not in these early frontier sites.  Given they mostly came in by ship, no stores or trading posts existed yet, they probably brought a minimal amount of necessities.  I would envision those as a later western era industrial revolution era type of item (1880's+), but I've never found one hunting ghost towns before where it seems like something like this could be found.  Neat find really.

5 hours ago, GB_Amateur said:

Or better yet, no mintmark and no stars around the obverse.  (Ok, none of those are known to have been minted.  But that's why you would want to find one.  If authenticated, instant retirement!)

Nice finds for both of you.  That British button looks to be in decent shape.  Your arid Western climate comes through again.  I'm curious to know what that copper baseplate(?) is, Tom.

If you're going to dream, dream big!  A coin like that would be awesome.  It's funny, I forget the year, but the director or some other such employee at the San Francisco mint gave his daughter a barber dime at the Children's Playground at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, and she spent it on an ice cream.  It was one of something like 15 known to exist type barber dimes, basically the holy grail of barber dimes.  So who knows what's waiting to be dug up.  I've been fortunate to dig two gold coins, and both were rare dates/mints, one's an example of less then 100 known to exist (according to PCGS).  You gotta love that, that's what keeps us going in this hobby 🙂 

The button is in pretty good shape.  I cleaned it with Naval Jelly to remove the crud and then hit it w/lemon juice to clean up any remaining gold gilt.  It came out pretty good, still a lot of gold gilt left on the front. Some sites out here have nice sandy loamy arid soil, and as long as there's not farming or animal pasturing going on, a lot of targets come out of the ground looking like they were just lost.  We have an area like that where the targets mostly come out in beautiful condition, but down the road is a stage stop in a cattle pasture, been cattle there for over 100 years, silver coins tend to come out in poor condition.

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51 minutes ago, Cal_Cobra said:

It's funny, I forget the year, but the director or some other such employee at the San Francisco mint gave his daughter a barber dime at the Children's Playground at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, and she spent it on an ice cream.  It was one of something like 15 known to exist type barber dimes, basically the holy grail of barber dimes.

Yep, that's the 1894-S.  Mint records show 24 were minted and it's been speculated that they were only made to balance the books for the year.  One has been found in circulated condition and it's thought be be the one you mention being spent by the mint director's daughter.  (PCGS won't let me look it up because my browser is outdated.)  But as you point out, the known count is about half of what were minted, so there's hope for us detectorists yet.  :laugh:  I'm not sure I want to find that one -- my heart would likely cease beating permanently and I would only have a few seconds to enjoy it, but as they say:  "what a way to go!")

Interestingly(?) there was an episode of History Channel's Pawn Stars where someone actually got on the show (!!) claiming to have an 1894-S Barber dime.  The date was so damaged it was unreadable.  Talk about 'wishful thinking'....  Idiots (or cons) like that should never receive publicity.  I quit watching that show a couple years ago -- too many a__holes behind the counter.  But before that, every once in a while they had some really rare coins show up.  My memory recalls 1866-S $20 gold piece in high grade uncirculated (might be mis-remembering the date; might have been a 61-S but not the Paquet version) -- I think Rick bought it for near $40k.  Another episode had an extremely rare 1922 (proof) High Relief Peace Dollar.  If I recall Rick offered around $90k for it; can't remember if the buyer let it go for that.

51 minutes ago, Cal_Cobra said:

I've been fortunate to dig two gold coins, and both were rare dates/mints, one's an example of less then 100 known to exist (according to PCGS).  You gotta love that, that's what keeps us going in this hobby 🙂 

You Western USA coin detectorists have it made!  (OK, you still likely have to put in thousands of hours to find a rarity, and then need to get lucky on top of it, but there are certainly some rare ones out there and many have been shown here.)  I've never lost my breath or even gotten my heart racing from a find, but I'd make an exception for something like those two gold coins you mention.  Hell, I'll get excited if I can just find a 1939-D Jeffie.  (Now someone here is going to say s/he's found multiples of that date+MM.  Go ahead, rub it in.  😁)

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Great story, persistence always pays off. I always enjoy a good end of day find. I've Only ever found 1 seated 1/2 dime in my area, was an 1857. Love the buttons and pull tabs Ha Ha

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On 1/18/2022 at 11:27 AM, calabash digger said:

That's awesome!

Thanks Cal 👍

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23 hours ago, dogodog said:

Great story, persistence always pays off. I always enjoy a good end of day find. I've Only ever found 1 seated 1/2 dime in my area, was an 1857. Love the buttons and pull tabs Ha Ha

There's areas at at this site that have almost zero modern influence/targets/trash, but if you wonder towards civilization more modern junk shows up, but mixed in with the oldies. 

On 1/18/2022 at 12:09 PM, GB_Amateur said:

Yep, that's the 1894-S.  Mint records show 24 were minted and it's been speculated that they were only made to balance the books for the year.  One has been found in circulated condition and it's thought be be the one you mention being spent by the mint director's daughter.  (PCGS won't let me look it up because my browser is outdated.)  But as you point out, the known count is about half of what were minted, so there's hope for us detectorists yet.  :laugh:  I'm not sure I want to find that one -- my heart would likely cease beating permanently and I would only have a few seconds to enjoy it, but as they say:  "what a way to go!")

Interestingly(?) there was an episode of History Channel's Pawn Stars where someone actually got on the show (!!) claiming to have an 1894-S Barber dime.  The date was so damaged it was unreadable.  Talk about 'wishful thinking'....  Idiots (or cons) like that should never receive publicity.  I quit watching that show a couple years ago -- too many a__holes behind the counter.  But before that, every once in a while they had some really rare coins show up.  My memory recalls 1866-S $20 gold piece in high grade uncirculated (might be mis-remembering the date; might have been a 61-S but not the Paquet version) -- I think Rick bought it for near $40k.  Another episode had an extremely rare 1922 (proof) High Relief Peace Dollar.  If I recall Rick offered around $90k for it; can't remember if the buyer let it go for that.

You Western USA coin detectorists have it made!  (OK, you still likely have to put in thousands of hours to find a rarity, and then need to get lucky on top of it, but there are certainly some rare ones out there and many have been shown here.)  I've never lost my breath or even gotten my heart racing from a find, but I'd make an exception for something like those two gold coins you mention.  Hell, I'll get excited if I can just find a 1939-D Jeffie.  (Now someone here is going to say s/he's found multiples of that date+MM.  Go ahead, rub it in.  😁)

Yes that's the one!  That barber dime was spent at Golden Gate Park and could've just as easily been lost there.  Local legend says it was, I don't know.  I saw that Pawn Stars with the unreadable date barber, what a joker haha

Our history doesn't go back as far, but as coins go we're lucky to find a high number of San Francisco and Carson City minted coins, a lot of the 1800's ones were good ones.  I've been blessed to dig some rare dates, 1916D Mercury dime, dozens of semi-key date seateds and barbers, two rare date/mint gold coins,  a "less then 100 known" per PCGS seated quarter.  Then there's the relics 🙂

I love this hobby, every conductor is a lottery ticket!

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1 hour ago, Cal_Cobra said:

Our history doesn't go back as far, but as coins go we're lucky to find a high number of San Francisco and Carson City minted coins, a lot of the 1800's ones were good ones.  I've been blessed to dig some rare dates, 1916D Mercury dime,...

So Denver minted rarities make it out there, too.  👍  Eastern USA, being older, has some good stuff as well, but because the branch mints typically made fewer coins per year and most of those were released in the West, I think you have an advantage for those who care about date+mm.  Older low denomination type coins are more prevalent in the East.

1 hour ago, Cal_Cobra said:

I love this hobby, every conductor is a lottery ticket!

First time I've heard that, but it's a great way of putting it.  People ask me why I spend hours collecting less than $1/hr (and that doesn't include expenses).  I'm going to use your answer from now on although I still don't expect them to understand.  Just as well; the competition is tough enough already.

I'd rather find a coin worth $100 than be handed a $1000 lottery ticket.  Again, most people wouldn't understand, but I bet you (and quite a few others here) do.

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48 minutes ago, GB_Amateur said:

So Denver minted rarities make it out there, too.  👍  Eastern USA, being older, has some good stuff as well, but because the branch mints typically made fewer coins per year and most of those were released in the West, I think you have an advantage for those who care about date+mm.  Older low denomination type coins are more prevalent in the East.

First time I've heard that, but it's a great way of putting it.  People ask me why I spend hours netting less than $1/hr (and that doesn't include expenses).  I'm going to use your answer from now on although I still don't expect them to understand.  Just as well; the competition is tough enough already.

I'd rather find a coin worth $100 than be handed a $1000 lottery ticket.  Again, most people wouldn't understand, but I bet you (and quite a few others here) do.

I know of a couple of other 1916D Mercury dimes that've been dug around here, 1909-S VDB wheat cents show up. 

People who embrace the history, and appreciate the historical context their finds represent, they understand it.  I never sell my finds, so it's not about the $ but it sure feels great to dig a high value target 👍

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3 hours ago, GB_Amateur said:

.....I'd rather find a coin worth $100 than be handed a $1000 lottery ticket.  Again, most people wouldn't understand, but I bet you (and quite a few others here) do.

 

Hardcore md'r relic hunters understand perfectly.  It's like if you're a fisherman:  No one ever taxidermied a fish they got from the supermarket.  But lots of persons taxidermy the wily evasive trophy lunker they caught on-their-own.

 

Same logic for md'ing :  The thrill of the chase is most of the fun.  And ........ yes ...... sometimes one of us *does* get the big-ticket-$$ item.

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