Western Massachusetts Cellar holes: another newbie question.

Chops

Jr. Member
Apr 18, 2022
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Years ago used to live variously in Western Massachusetts and South Western New Hampshire. Hiking, or cross country skiing in the woods was a frequent past time, and it was routine to come across these abandoned cellar pits from long abandoned farmsteads. A lot of these farms were abandoned, some say, at the advent of the Civil War and farmers said, "to heck with this," and went to the Army for an adventure. Which they no doubt found. Also, the great mill cities of Holyoke and Springfield were cranking up, and laboring in a mill might be preferable to starving on a remote farm.

So, to my knowledge, these places have not really been examined. I mean that for all the times I was out there I never saw anyone with a detector. Do detectorists pursue these cellar holes? Probably a lot of rusted nails, but no doubt the inhabitants would have dropped coins and other fascinating artifacts over the course of a lifetime.

Do you guys frequent these cellar holes?
 

mudwhale

Jr. Member
Jun 12, 2017
83
41
CT
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In other words, if you've seen it anywhere you have ever been, so have 10,000 other folks!
 

uhfradarwill

Full Member
Mar 20, 2022
157
681
Barre, MA
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Equinox

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I hunt stone foundations very often in Central MA and have never ran across another detectorist.
I also continue to hit areas "pounded" over and over again and still find old coins and other goodies.
If I see someone in one of my more accessible spots and he has a 10" or bigger coil, I just relax and thank God he is simply getting the surface trash out of my way!!
 

lisfisher

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Mar 5, 2008
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Cellar holes are a great place to hunt. True, probably pounded hard by others but ya never know. It only takes one square inch to find an old coin which can be easily missed by others. I like hunting the outskirts of cellar holes it normally produces much more besides junk. I've revisited the same cellar holes multiple times and have found coins even when going back again.
 

mudwhale

Jr. Member
Jun 12, 2017
83
41
CT
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Nokta Impact
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Hmmm. I frequented those woods, rarely saw another living soul.
Just wasn't your day! I never have come across anyone in all my hunts. Iron on rocks, hanging in trees ETC.. In 200+ years, every site you know of has been hit hard.
 

mudwhale

Jr. Member
Jun 12, 2017
83
41
CT
Detector(s) used
Nokta Impact
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I hunt stone foundations very often in Central MA and have never ran across another detectorist.
I also continue to hit areas "pounded" over and over again and still find old coins and other goodies.
If I see someone in one of my more accessible spots and he has a 10" or bigger coil, I just relax and thank God he is simply getting the surface trash out of my way!!
Yup there is still stuff to be found. You just have to go slower and sniff a lot harder.
 

eyemustdigtreasure

Silver Member
Mar 2, 2013
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Years ago used to live variously in Western Massachusetts and South Western New Hampshire. Hiking, or cross country skiing in the woods was a frequent past time, and it was routine to come across these abandoned cellar pits from long abandoned farmsteads. A lot of these farms were abandoned, some say, at the advent of the Civil War and farmers said, "to heck with this," and went to the Army for an adventure. Which they no doubt found. Also, the great mill cities of Holyoke and Springfield were cranking up, and laboring in a mill might be preferable to starving on a remote farm.

So, to my knowledge, these places have not really been examined. I mean that for all the times I was out there I never saw anyone with a detector. Do detectorists pursue these cellar holes? Probably a lot of rusted nails, but no doubt the inhabitants would have dropped coins and other fascinating artifacts over the course of a lifetime.

Do you guys frequent these cellar holes?
Well, there always is something still there, even if it has been "pounded to death"!
The lip of the cellar hole and just beyond should be tons of iron and other stuff.
By the relics and the feature's dimensions, you can guess the use of the bldg.
Barn, cabin, etc.
Watch out who owns the land, though....
 

FreeBirdTim

Silver Member
Sep 24, 2013
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Scituate, RI
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If you've seen a cellar hole within an hours walk from anywhere, It's been pounded to death since the late 50's.

False. I've found quite a few cellar holes that were virgin spots. You just have to go where no one wants to go. Swampy areas, spots a mile in the woods and heavily wooded areas. They're out there, but they're not easy to find.

Also remember there are many old home sites that don't even have cellar holes. I've found a few cabin sites that didn't have a cellar hole or even stone walls nearby. But the spots were full of nails and other evidence of a home, such as large strap hinges.

Bottom line, you have think positive, keep an open mind and think outside the box to find the good stuff.
 
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Chops

Jr. Member
Apr 18, 2022
23
36
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #11
I hunt stone foundations very often in Central MA and have never ran across another detectorist.
I also continue to hit areas "pounded" over and over again and still find old coins and other goodies.
If I see someone in one of my more accessible spots and he has a 10" or bigger coil, I just relax and thank God he is simply getting the surface trash out of my way!!
HAH! What is the oldest coin you have found??
 

uhfradarwill

Full Member
Mar 20, 2022
157
681
Barre, MA
Detector(s) used
Minelab:
Sovereign GT
Equinox

Tesoro:
Comparde
I've found an 1858 or 1959 Canadian 1 cent coin but it's pretty worn and it could be argued it is a later production of this series.
The best and oldest coin I've ever found is this One Dime from 1875.
I'm just a on again off again noob. Let some of the more successful peeps chime in and you'll really see the old stuff!!
Will
DSC_6993.jpg
 
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Chops

Jr. Member
Apr 18, 2022
23
36
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #13
Ooooooooooooo 1858. James Buchanan is President. Native Americans are a viable political foe and force. Transatlantic cable is laid, and President Buchanan trades telegraphs with Queen Victoria. AND the Pikes Peak gold rush is on....did the inhabitant throw down his plow to find his fortune in Colorado?
 

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