Need some advice

alex12

Greenie
Mar 1, 2019
14
96
Lorain County
Detector(s) used
Equinox 600, Land Ranger Pro
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I really enjoy metal detecting but want to breakthrough mediocre results. So I tried to hit some home runs through research. I located a fort I had researched that had never been discovered before. I had googled it several times just to make sure there were no updates (like someone locating it or working the site etc). So I googled it the other day and found that a group had been working the site and never published anything until after they had finished working the site (obviously to avoid someone disturbing the site without permission ie nighthawking). I was disappointed but also encouraged because I was correct. So I actually again found a fort with extremely strong evidence to supports its location. My question is how do I approach these people as a stranger who is just a random detectorist. I'm fine knocking on a door for a random permission, but to me this is very different from a regular door knock

1. The person's driveway is a quarter mile from the street, so even if I felt ok going to the house (which I don't) I feel strongly that it would be trespassing.

2. It's a site of a fort, so it does have historical significance. It is open farmland so it would just be regular detecting (nothing crazy like excavating a driveway or landscaping) but I feel even if I told the people here is all my evidence, there's a strong chance they'd say and who are you and why would we let a complete stranger (non-archeologist) look for it on our land.

I have volunteered for my local historical society so I could use that as reference to my character. They are only 3 people strong so that is a dead end in terms of contacts for networking. I have volunteered at the historical society by work but again its 3 people and a dead end. Obviously I realize since it is historical I'd be fine donating the objects found to the landowner or historical society. I've thought about things such as asking a local archeologist, or talking to their local historical society. I'm skeptical of those methods because when I spoke to some other landowners in the area they told of multiple issues they've had in the past with either detectorists or even being sued by the park system as an attempt to acquire their land, so some of the people say no in that area simply to avoid potential issues.

Does anyone have any ideas?
 
Upvote 4

CreakyDigger

Silver Member
Jul 23, 2019
2,748
6,306
Upstate NY
Detector(s) used
White's Spectra v3; Equinox 600
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Since you know the address of the landowner, how about sending them a letter in the mail? Include some photos of things that you have found elsewhere, and let them know that they are welcome to keep what you find, except for photos and records that you will donate to the local historical society. Stress your interest in local history and in making discoveries that would bring the past to light.
 

Ocean7

Bronze Member
Apr 15, 2004
1,447
557
🏆 Honorable Mentions:
1
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
well you have to realize that you'll get many No's for an answer from private land owners. They may run out and get a metal detector and try their own luck.
I had a business card made fairly cheap. 250 cards for $5.45 last time I purchased them.
www.vistaprint.com

Card has full name
City, State
phone number
email address

Finder of Lost Things
Property markers, tanks, jewelry and rings.
Colonial properties – my specialty.
Three different Counties around me (how far you'll drive)

Hand them your card and that seems more official to many folks.
A local farmer needed a property marker found in one corner of
his property. When he read my card, he said, 'oh could you find a
marker?' and gave me basic area. I did in about 5-10 minutes.
Then he let me MD his whole property including lawn close
to colonial house etc.

Use your imagination and put yourself in their shoes with a compete
stranger coming to your door in these very strange times. A letter
would do to but you never know who gets that letter and whether
they just pitch it or what.

Some people are good with it and others are no way in hell. You
have to remain positive. Sometimes just let them think about it.
See what works for you.
 

pepperj

Gold Member
Feb 3, 2009
21,038
60,924
Detector(s) used
Deus, Minelab 3030, E-Trac,
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
What Ocean 7 said covers a lot and I know a few guys that use the card.
I'm just out going, never afraid of being turned down.
I knock, stand off the steps Rule #1
I ask about the ownership of the land I want to detect on.
I might do a left fork in the conversation and throw a weather, who and why I'm asking.
One gets that feeling if you're going to hit the target, or get looking again.
If they say they own it, then I ask them if they know the history of the fort, Homestead, etc....
I might have a print of the Historical Atlas of the property.
Hand it to them, and say that you got your chores done, a day away from work to play, Birthday. I tell them I detect, been doing for over 50yrs, I forget about the world when I detect.
I might throw a reference name at them, or 2,3,4,5 till they know I'm not crazy.
I tell them where I live, tell them I will check back if I see, find something that will damage a tractor tire.
I have a high 90% average.
If not sure, ask around first if they are approachable.
I have even gotten permissions beside other permission just to break the ice.
Farmers talk, and once your in, they appreciate you looking out and respecting their dirt.
Best of luck. Sometimes one has to get a tad sweaty in the pits to do the first few knocks.
Just be yourself.
 

Ocean7

Bronze Member
Apr 15, 2004
1,447
557
🏆 Honorable Mentions:
1
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
and if you suspect a cache on that property - then definitely get one of these signed. Here's basic text you can use.
Search & Salvage Agreement

Search and Salvage Agreement

This agreement is entered between _______________________, hereafter known as the Salvors and _____________________ , hereafter known as the Landowner, for the purpose of permitting the Salvors to enter and search on the property of the Landowner.

In consideration of permitting the Salvors to enter and search the property of the Landowner, of the division of finds between the parties as provided by this contract, of the release of the Landowner’s liability as provided in this contract, and of the labor, time, skill and investment of equipment required by the Salvors in searching for and recovering finds on the owner’s property, the parties agree as follows:

1. That the Salvors shall bear all expenses incident to the search without deduction from the value of the finds before any division between the parties pursuant to Paragraph 4.

2. That any and all items other than specie and bullion are acquired and retained by the salvers. This includes, but is not limited to, jewelry, relics, artifacts, flatware, utensils, papers, maps, tokens and books.

3. That the Salvors notify and invite the Landowner to participate in the actual recovery of any pursued cache. That the Landowner shall assist the Salvors in the recovery in every manner possible.

4. That recoveries of specie be divided as follows_50% to the Salvors and __50% to the Landowner. That this division shall be made as follows: All coins shall be placed with the obverse side down and mixed to everyone’s satisfaction. Then each participant shall remove a specified number of coins, each in turn, beginning with the Landowner and without seeing the date of the coin. This is to eliminate searching for the more desirable coins. That bullion be divided in a like manner. In the case of an odd number of castings, the remaining items be divided at the site by the Salvers cutting the item into a proportionate sizes and the Landowner choosing the first lot.

5. That both the Salvors and the Landowner agree that the find shall remain undisclosed to any persons other than immediate families of the participants. Furthermore, the recovery shall not be disclosed to any member of the media in any manner.

6. That the Salvors agree to release the Landowner from all liability for personal injury or property damage that the Salvors may suffer as a result of the Landowner’s negligence while on the Landowner’s property only during times of such search and recovery. This release shall be binding and forever discharge the Landowner, his/her, its heirs, executors, and administrators, from all actions, causes of action, claims, and demands for, upon, or by reason of any damage, loss, injury, or suffering which the Salvors may sustain while searching or making a recovery on the Landowner’s property.

7. That for the purposes of this contract the following terms are defined:

"Cache" is any concealed, lost, or buried gold or silver in bullion form or gold or silver coins if such coins number 10 (ten) or more and are found together at the same time and the same place,, but this definition shall not include groups or individual items of jewelry, whether or not found with other items subject to this definition;

"Relics and Artifacts" include but are not limited to any weapons, projectiles, or items such as eating utensils, or other items not otherwise expressly covered by this agreement, regardless of age or value;

"Jewelry" includes only items, when made of gold or silver, such as rings, necklaces, medallions, and similar items.

8. That this agreement may be terminated upon written notice by either party.

9. That this is the entire agreement between the parties.

_______________________________________(signature of Salvor)

_______________________________________(signature of Salvor)

_______________________________________(signature of Salvor)

_______________________________________(signature of Landowner)

_______________________________________(signature of Landowner)

_______________________________________(date)

_______________________________________(Property)
 

RJGMC

Hero Member
Sep 6, 2008
710
404
KANSAS CITY METRO
Detector(s) used
SIMPLEX, EQUINOX AND TESORO
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Door knocking can be hard. I am always afraid of the answer "No", you cannot hunt. I have been there and done that. But, at this point, you are already saying no for them. Just recently I received a yes answer for a square mile or so that I had been trying to get permission to for about a year and a half. Others that knew this person, even told me good luck, he doesn't like strangers on his property, etc. Once I was able to talk to him face to face, explain to him I won't leave any holes, remove all trash, no driving in the fields, you know the rest. It was a yes.

Just saying, do not say no for the owners, let them give you an answer. It may be the answer you are looking for.

Good luck!

Bob
 
OP
A

alex12

Greenie
Mar 1, 2019
14
96
Lorain County
Detector(s) used
Equinox 600, Land Ranger Pro
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #7
Thanks for all the great replies. I'm still not sure how someone would feel about me driving up there 1/4 mile long driveway. I just got an email from my local historical society and they want to put me on the cover of their newsletter and put me in the local paper for my volunteering. So I think with showing the owner the evidence and showing the newsletter and newspaper article it might do the trick. I would assume those would make me a lot more trustworthy.
 

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