22 May 2016
The American Digger magazine was formed in 2004 by ‘those who love the hobby’ and is a bi-monthly production; the publisher is Butch Holcombe. At the end of every issue Butch publishes a column punningly called ‘The Hole Truth’ in which he discusses different issues. His latest, although written for the American market, is universal in its appeal and can be appreciated by treasure hunters, … cough errr … detectorists everywhere. Butch has kindly allowed me reproduce the article, unabridged and not Anglicised in any way.
17 May 2016
In 2010 I published an article on ‘cow magnets’, but lost it in the great crash of 2013. Judging by questions I see on detecting forums about whether cowpats initiate a signal on metal detectors, I think it’s about time I resurrected that post. Read this and you may realise how a machine may give a signal on a cowpat.
In retrospect, and in my opinion any such signal is best ignored. The results are invariably disappointing and not worth risking the attendant hazards. In the past year I have read about children being hospitalised by E Coli from cowpats in a park and warnings published in the press. The strain of the bacteria is often associated with rural environments that may have been contaminated by animal faeces. Detectorists be aware!
13 May 2016
In September 2014, Scottish detectorist Derek McLennan found a large Viking hoard, the largest of its kind found in the United Kingdom and Scotland’s finest treasure discovery. At that time it was called the ‘Dumfriesshire Hoard’, but is now known as the ‘Galloway Hoard’. I reported the fact in a blog post of October 2014 followed by an update at the bottom of that post in November of the same year. Derek wrote exclusive articles about the hoard in the UK Searcher magazines of December 2014 and January 2015. The latter two articles are reproduced here, courtesy of Harry Bain, the editor of The Searcher magazine.
6 May 2016
In 1999, detectorist John Donnelly from Billingham in North East England, spent a caravanning holiday near Ullapool in Scotland. One day, whilst searching along the shore line near Ardvreck Castle he found a gold annular brooch. John died in 2010. They are facts. Thanks to Randy Dee, his one-time detecting partner and son Mark, I have tried to make some kind of sense from what happened next. In the fascinating tale that is about to unfold I attempt to separate some of the facts from the fiction that has grown up around this spectacular find.
2 May 2016
Garrett is currently advertising ‘treasure hunting’ as a sport. This fact has dismayed many English detectorists who regard their metal detecting as a hobby. What do YOU think?
I now don my Devil’s advocate hat, state that the Garrett company is 100% correct in what they say, and will provide the evidence that may convince you. All I ask is that you read these arguments then make up your own mind.
27 April 2016
Keith Bains was out detecting recently when he unearthed a small metallic masonic item and didn’t know what it was. He showed it to me and I didn’t recognise it either, so sent a picture off to a couple of my masonic friends, asking if they had any idea what it could be. They came up with ideas, but nothing definite. One of them even asked on an online masonic forum if anyone had come across anything similar, but to no avail.
23 April 2016
St. George’s day April 23, is supposedly England’s special day. Actually, we have no official national day and it largely goes uncelebrated, which is a shame as George is our patron saint. His emblem, a red cross on a white background, is the flag of England and part of the British flag. It is believed that George was a brave Roman soldier who protested against the Romans’ torture of Christians and died for his beliefs. The popularity of St George in England stems from the time of the early Crusades when it is said that the Normans saw him in a vision and were victorious. His image appears on many of our UK coins.
19 April 2016