What were considered valuables to early settlers considering most poor
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Thread: What were considered valuables to early settlers considering most poor

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  1. #1
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    What were considered valuables to early settlers considering most poor

    May posted before sorry, being the times of 1800 up to the industrial revolution what did early settlers have of valuables, are we stupid to think especially when we detect old foundations in the woods. Silver and gold, I mean come on these folks where poor correct. You might find spoons, buttons, horseshoe, obvious relics of the times but not precious metals. Anyhow please correct me I’ve been wrong before, if silver and or gold was kept hoarded or buried near by, thankyou
    Last edited by Treasure_Hunter; Mar 26, 2020 at 01:34 PM.

  2. #2
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    How long have ladies cherished silverware? At least enough to count it now and then. And keep it bright too...

    A few coins may have been squirreled.
    Not needed in daily life activities around/on the homestead so why risk losing them?

    There has been an account of a silver coin used in the bottom of the milk bottle served from. To keep germs/bacteria counts down.

    Settlers were not all former upper crust. But knew of upper crust trinkets.
    It would be a well to do successful homestead that had silver napkin rings ,wouldn't it?

    I expect little gold and silver hidden.
    What was known hidden was portable should the homestead be left/abandoned.

    Rumor has it (I'll call it rumor having forgotten sources) some hearths held coin(s). Some sills or other areas had luck/superstition of a coin. But, a coin would have had to have been in possession first...
    Most folks didn't homestead because they were wealthy. But hey , there have been well to do folk in history that enjoyed scratching in the dirt. Some were laying low too for reasons of their own.

    Too , when the homestead was left or abandon ect. it was still a landmark.
    Many caught fire in my family history.
    One of which was a general store.
    Some post(mail) was involved so there's potential coins in circulation.
    Natives traded there too , and kegs of beads were in the loft/upstairs.

    Depending where the homestead was, someone could have had some card playing money squirreled away. Or a gal some of her butter and egg money if she had a market for such.
    Why are chicken coops mentioned as places to check? And how near an old home foundation might one be located?


    So , we never know for sure.

    A relative now gone was a history buff and detectorist and more.
    He found/located a big long ago projects workers camp where little existed hinting it had been a camp.
    I only recall a single dime recovered but it could have been noteworthy for type..(?)
    Some one dropped or did not recover a placed coin.

    You mention seeing the remains today. Other generations have too.
    IF some one wanted to hide something from a later generation , could a site you know suffice due to landmarking? An inner or outer corner of an old foundation?
    L.o..l.. I had a strong hit under about a six inch diameter choke cherry tree in the corner of an old foundation.
    How aluminum foil looking stuff got under there......

    Another site had boulders remaining from a prior barn foundation(?) One corner had a hard hit on the detector in the silver range.
    My partner wanted to move it over the drop near it , but I could not figure how to return it. And it was like most sites one that needed no sign of my being there.
    Though some one had been there since I scouted it and left recovered iron placed in obvious locations and signs of digging.
    Sloppy work and sloppy recoveries.
    Who ever it was missed something I recovered... I may (certainly) have missed stuff too.
    Last edited by releventchair; Mar 25, 2020 at 11:24 PM.
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  3. #3
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    A hoard would be most unlikely, so most likely early settlers may have had a few or less precious items- possibly carried over from across the pond. I found a German made gold thimble- open ended probably a wedding gift
    Other items could be gold or silver jewelry- of which they may have only possessed a very few. Never found anything jewelry made of precious metal myself- you never know so keep hunting.
    RustyGold and releventchair like this.

  4. #4
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    A-Team = Reasearch and Recovery Team. If you don’t care about the past generations of centuries ago, then your current thought of today will always be incomplete, it all matters folks.

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    Being no banks and or safe deposit boxes, nobody trusted government mostly for obvious reasons, where did the folks hide or bury there valuables if they had any on the property, under the house in a tree, down by the creek, who knows.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by 49er12 View Post
    Being no banks and or safe deposit boxes, nobody trusted government mostly for obvious reasons, where did the folks hide or bury there valuables if they had any on the property, under the house in a tree, down by the creek, who knows.
    Or the outhouse possibly. Or where there was a garden. If any old signs of a sidewalk, maybe the edges. I would run whatever detector you have over some mason jar lids, possibly old ones and see what the target I.D. is.


    “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.”
    – Albert Einstein

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 49er12 View Post
    Being no banks and or safe deposit boxes, nobody trusted government mostly for obvious reasons, where did the folks hide or bury there valuables if they had any on the property, under the house in a tree, down by the creek, who knows.
    I believe hiding places have changed a little over the years as well as where the person was living and their economic status. Urban dwellers with no yard would find a place in their house/apartment, such as under the floor or in the wall. Attic and/or basement if they have one is also a likely spot. If they have an outside yard area, they might bury a container and the spot would probably be within view from the house. In all periods, locations, and economic situations, a brick chimney (where a brick could be removed) is another common place. Rural areas have other options. A barn or outbuilding is a good place as well as post holes close to the house. There are other places, but, most of those don't help us detectorist much, as those items are usually missing from old home sites......places like freezers, mattresses, desks, books/bookcases, etc.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by 49er12 View Post
    Being no banks and or safe deposit boxes, nobody trusted government mostly for obvious reasons, where did the folks hide or bury there valuables if they had any on the property, under the house in a tree, down by the creek, who knows.
    Where would you hide something on a given site?

    I know of relics from the dirt under stairs going into a house.

    Thresholds are mentioned by searchers of old building sites. When you're inside an outbuilding you are harder to see. As is what you are doing.
    Where did you bury something along a wall inside ,or whats inside affects how easy it is to recover. Mules? Tractors?
    While the threshold is kept open to use the door.

    Chickens can make a fuss if invaded at night. More so , with the threat of fire ruining more than one homestead from it's winter heating and cooking (not all but some had separate cook houses,wash houses ect.) a chicken coop or outbuilding would likely be spared from a house fire.

    In remote areas a secondary outbuilding meant being able to stay on the site after a fire.
    Even today it's not an uncommon practice in the Northern bush.

    A common theme is a site within view of the house. Not always proven though due to individuality.

    Where would you hide something is still worth a go .
    We can't see hollowed out fake beam in a barn that is only mounds of earth and decayed wood today.
    And it's not a house foundation. Or root cellar with an extra jar buried in the floor. Or a rock loose in a springhouse ,or well.
    Or the exposed top plate of a wall Dad found a pistol on.
    But until a whole site is checked out....
    3cylbill likes this.

 

 

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