Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Thaw, Dammit! Thaw!

I am trying to be patient, but I don't ever remember a winter that seemed to drag out like this one is. I mean, we are just days from April and my yard is still covered with four inches of snow. It's ridiculous. I am dying to get out there with my E-trac. I have had a few lunchtime digs on the beach and in the bare spots appearing in the parks this week. Came up with 5 or 6 wheaties, only one of which even had a legible date--1944. A large copper button, what appears to be the cap off of a very small bottle, which says something about an EZ LAB. A tiny bottle of instant dogs, I think. You know, you pour the EZ LAB on a flea and the flea gets dogs and then one of the dogs takes over and outgrows the flea and then you have a Lab, which then gets fleas--it's an endless cycle, really. Also, an interesting little piece, made of lead, I think. I don't know what to make of it, but there are definitely remnants of images on either side, especially the side shown in the pic, which under a magnifying lens, looks remarkably like an old Roman battle axe. Plus, some little doodads and some nice blue seaglass.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Tony Millionaire

  Do you have friends like these?  I do.

  (And if you haven't been exposed to the genius of Tony Millionaire yet, do yourself a favor and expose yourself. Expose yourself today.)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Things With Holes in Them

Ukko who? That's right. While half of the state was hunkered down in their homes because of snow cancellations, I was metal detecting down at Camden Harbor, freezing my arse off and finding my first large cent of the year. Actually, I only got enough beach at low tide during lunch, so I wasn't out there too long. Also, the finds in these pics are not all from yesterday. The spoon was found a few days ago in Union Common and the gold-plated tie-clip was found in Camden park. I have just been trying to get out and find any thawed ground, any chance I get, and there isn't much of either.
I love finding spoons and it was interesting to find one with a date on it. The tie-clip had me excited, thinking I had found some hunk of gold jewelry, as did the purple jewel button. Also, there was the little piece of a child's ring, with the baseball elephant on it. The coin definitely excited me most of all, however. Of course, there is literally no detail remaining on either side, but I know it's a large copper and over a hundred years old, and it sat buried in muck for most of that time until my E-trac made a noise and I pulled it out with my fingers. From someone else's hand to mine, over a great span of time. That's what gets me. That's what matters.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Lead Bale Seals

I didn't know what it was when I found it. I knew it was made of lead and about an inch in diameter, but that was pretty much it. At a total loss as to identification, I posted it up for my good friends at Metal Detecting Maine, who seem to be able to identify anything. Sure enough, replies started coming in immediately explaining to me that what I had found was a lead bale seal. Oh, of course, thought. But what the hell is a lead bale seal? I consulted Google and was astounded at the fascinating websites about the history, curating, and collecting of lead bale seals. The wonderful Colchester Treasure Hunting & Metal Detecting website at www.colchestertreasurehunting.co.uk/baleseals.htm states that, "Bale seals such were single disc seals... and were used to identify textiles, as well as parcels and bales of trade goods. The obverse would typically display a city's arms, and the reverse would record data such as the length or width of fabric or the weight of parcel." The site has a wonderful catalog of seals dating back to medieval times, and the similarities between those and the object found by me in a park in Union, Maine were really quite surprising. Now, obviously, the seal found by me is of a much later date, probably the mid-1800's, and not nearly as rare or valuable as a 7th Century Roman bale seal, but still exciting, nonetheless.
Krom from Metal Detecting Maine told me, "Definitely a grain bag seal," and Kelly, from the same site suggested origins in the Maine Central Railroad, hence the M.C. The number on the rear is either an 85 or a 95.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Man Who Mouth Er Fill Wit Pearls

Apparently, the odds of finding a pearl in an oyster are 1 in 12,000. Is it time for me to go to Vegas? I mean, Hollywood Slots is just up the coast, because I just found a pearl. I have been fascinated with the idea of finding a pearl in an oyster ever since my first oyster at age 18. I am pretty certain I think about it every time I swallow one down. And believe it or not, it finally happened. I was at one of my favorite local watering holes, Lobsterman's Restaurant in Rockland, Maine, partaking of their amazing happy-hour dollar oysters, which are brought down from a family oyster farm in Castine and shucked as you order, when lo and behold, I felt the little bugger rolling around on my tongue. It is irregular, as could be expected (I guess) in it's natural state, but an interesting blend of black and white. It was difficult to get a decent picture of, but the shiny spot on the front is just the glare from the flash, not gold. It's not a black and white pearl with gold in it. Is it? Whoa! I am planning on having it polished down and installed in a piece of jewelry for "Her at Home", at You Tube's Deep Digger Dan would put it. Pretty cool, and I'm glad I didn't swallow it. Things could have gotten messy.

Also, really do check out Lobsterman's Restaurant on Main St. in Rockland. The food is great, the atmosphere is soothing, the prices are reasonable (especially during happy hour, which offers dollar Labatt's and dollar oysters), and the owners are awesome. It's definitely a great addition to downtown Rockland.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Kitty Porn?

  I don't know if this counts as treasure, unless it's considered a trove of hilarity, but it was found in a book in a thrift store by my friend Ian Lary and I almost fell over laughing when he pulled it out. I have found Polaroid porn in books before. Frankly, I am always kind of nervous about it, as a few of them have been really disturbing, but I have never seen anything this wild and explicit (and cute). What else can I say? Hopefully, the ground will thaw soon so I can get out there and start digging!