Intro, and Q about Use of lead after Civil War?
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Thread: Intro, and Q about Use of lead after Civil War?

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  1. #1

    Feb 2021
    Southeast Texas
    Equinox 800
    6 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Intro, and Q about Use of lead after Civil War?

    Hello, First post, lifelong explorer, bottle hunter, up to no gooder, and recent metal detectorist.

    Last summer I was gifted a cheap Amazon detector which was great at telling me their were quarters in the sky when I happened to point it upwards.

    Still, I realized the value of a metal detector, and last month upgraded to an Equinox 800. I uploaded a coin shooting program from Youtube and went to work on a local ghost sawmill town (1881-1912) that has been on my friends private property for decades.

    These pictures are what I've detected so far. There is such little trash the Nox hardly makes a sound and when it does its usually something good.

    I found my first pre 1891 shotgun shell cap, and then all the others you see here since. Found the 2 V nickels (1889) about 2 feet from each other. Found the small bicycle whistle siren (1896) at the private cemetery which holds the graves of a Dr's 2 small infant children 1892. My friend just mows around that hill and clears the sticks from the stones ever so often. Found the harmonica yesterday, got to be old, has wooden reed and screws/nuts holding it together, not rivets. I spent an hour searching google last night for photos and never came up with one that matched the scroll this one has.

    I'm curious about the lead bullets. The only Civil War related history this part of East Texas has that I know of, is when 3,000 acres were burned of the Big Thicket, to flush out the common men who were hiding from the fighting. I do not know of any actual battles here and doubt there were. Still, the battle of Sabine Pass was only maybe 45 miles away.

    Anyways, I've been finding a number of bullets with different markings on them. The biggest one is HEAVY. Would hate to get hit with that. Only a few look like they've hit something mid shot. Any idea on relation to Civil War, if any?

    Also curious about the small lead balls I'm finding. Only one has been perfectly round. The rest are crude, almost as a leftover droplet from a mold or something. Are these buckshot? Pistol shot? I've read all about shot towers, and methods on producing balls with molds. I've ever read about Buck and Ball, though I dont think the history of this area dates back that far, besides the spanish explorations in the 1600s. The Big Thicket was so impenetrable that few settled it until the 1840s etc.

    How long were rural men and women producing these lead bullets and balls after the 1860's? I'm just trying to get a feel for what they would've been doing in those woods and for how long. Are these lead pieces part of an older time, even older than the 1891 shotgun caps, or was there some dude in a coonskin cap using these for decades after the 1860's?

    I appreciate any info you can give me, I find cleaning up and researching my finds just as fun as pulling them out of the dirt.

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  2. #2

    Feb 2016
    macro racer 2, whites mx5, whites mx sport, trx pinpointer
    1259 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Hello and welcome to the forum from Missouri.

    Most all those cartridge cases are relatively modern with the possible exception of the stubby large caliber one with the larger rim in the left center of the 3rd photo. I couldn't tell if it was rim fire or center fire. Without measurements and weight can't tell if round balls are buck shot or possible .36 caliber black powder pistol or rifle balls ( double aught buckshot is roughly .33 caliber.

    If all this was found in a relatively small area I would say someone was using that area for target practice at one time. Again welcome to the forum, lots of very knowledgeable folks on here.


  3. #3

    Feb 2021
    Southeast Texas
    Equinox 800
    6 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Thanks Don, I'll have to get some weights and measurements. I did figure the cartridges were modern. These were found over an area of about 10 acres, all cleared field. I found a few pieces of the lead in the surrounding woods but it's so thick, it's hard to swing a machine.
    ecmo likes this.

  4. #4

    Aug 2016
    6769 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Nick, welcome to T Net from Michigan!

    After detecting for over 40 years, I recall an old article about a medal that was found that was given to the Davis Guard members to commemorate the Sabine Pass Battle victory. I can't find the article, but here's an image of a copy of the medal.
    RustyGold likes this.

  5. #5
    Charter Member
    Aug 2013
    Southern California
    Equinox / XP Deus
    10244 times
    Welcome to TreasureNet Nick. Nice haul, good luck!
    SD51 likes this.

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



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