Got very lucky with metal detecting

I went detecting the other day at one of my favorite fields. The conditions were harsh, with heavy rain and loads of mud. So it was a little hard to stay sharp and focused. At a certain moment i thought i found some bits of random lead (i find a lot of these) and quickly chucked them in my bag. When i arrived home i found out to my surprise that these bits together actually formed a large silver buckle. A shoe buckle to be precise, i am guessing from the late 19th century. I cleaned it and glued it back together and marveled over it.
Since i also found a lot of pottery bits i decided to visit the spot again the next day and search some more, only to find the other buckle from the pair! This was such an awesome experience and i thought i’d share it, also because in a way i see some similarities with the Southwestern belt buckles that i frequently see here on the forum (:




13 Likes

@Bluegreen
Awesome finds!
So very interesting! The buckles are astonishing.
There must’ve been shoes there at one time, but now long gone!!!
I think they are a bit earlier, more like 1800-1830s. Any markings on them?
I love the blue and white pottery shards, too!

3 Likes

@Bluegreen You had two amazing days and finds. Thank you for sharing your story.

3 Likes

Thanks @Stracci ! Nice to hear that they might be older, for me it’s the older the better. There were no real markings, one of the buckles has an inscription that look like a couple of x’s, but i’m not sure if it actually means anything.

And i also love the blue and white pottery shards, plus they are indicators that nice metal finds will be possible in the area.

5 Likes

@here4turquoise yes indeed, i’m still buzzing. And you’re welcome, it’s a pleasure.

4 Likes

So cool! Amazing to me that you found them, put them back together, and then restored them to their former beauty. Thank you so much for sharing this!

Are the blue and white pottery pieces Delft pottery? My mom always talked about liking that, but I don’t know much about it except it’s made in the Netherlands (where you are, am I correct?).

You might be interested to know that there is a popular vacation town named Holland just about 3 hrs north of us in the state of Michigan (I live in the state of IN - northern part). It was founded by Dutch settlers in 1847. I haven’t spent a lot of time there, but we visit other smaller towns nearby on the lake; they are all on the shore of Lake Michigan. It even has a tulip festival every May!

3 Likes

@Ziacat My husband was born in South Bend, IN. (Both of his parents were born in South Bend, too.)

3 Likes

@Bluegreen Wow! Such terrific finds. You did a wonderful job cleaning/restoring the buckles - they’re beautiful. Please let us know if you discover any info about their history. I really like the pottery shards. I’ve seen pieces like these made into pendants & pins. Thanks for sharing!

3 Likes

Great finds @Bluegreen . One of my favorite hobbies. I finally got out to a 1723 stone house last week.

The marks on your buckles look like German marks I’ve seen before but the design looks like English George III decoration.

5 Likes

We were practically neighbors :grin: We are in northeastern IN. My brother went to college there back in the day, Notre Dame of course.

2 Likes

Thanks @Ziacat , and you’re very welcome!
I think one could indeed call the blue/ white pottery Delfts Blauw (Delft Blue), but i’m still learning (been doing this for a little over a year now). I also see this type of pottery called Majolica or Faience.

And i didn’t know that there’s a town named Holland in Michigan, that’s incredibly cool!
I think it’s pretty unknown over here, as opposed to places like Brooklyn/Breukelen or Harlem/Haarlem which most Dutch people know about. Thanks for mentioning this (:

2 Likes

Thanks @Patina ! If i’m able to find out a lil’ more info i will share it over here.
And i was also thinking about doing something with the pottery shards, like stabilize them somehow and make beads or pendants of them. Would take quite some time to understand how everything works though, but could be totally worth it. Didn’t think it had been done before and now i’m very curious to see how other people incorporated them! Gonna search around a little later tonight

3 Likes

Hi @StevesTrail , awesome to hear that you are digging as well :slight_smile: It’s also one of my favorite hobbies for sure.
Those are some pretty nice coins! I especially like the silver one. Did you find them at the 1723 place?
On most of the places i search the soil has been deposited from elsewhere, but every now and then i get to find something ‘in situ’, and i like that the best.

And thanks for the info about the marks and design.

2 Likes

Yes @Bluegreen , they were found there. There was also an English War of 1812 encampment in the woods. Going back next week when warmer. Not much time left with winter coming and the house is to be sold. The silver was found were landscaping had been done so you never know where you will find things. Your area has a lot of really old history. No telling what was lost in the fields.

2 Likes

Here’s a link to a bit of info about Holland, MI, USA. I learned it has the only working Dutch windmill in the US, which still grinds wheat. https://www.michigan.org/city/holland
It’s also home to one my favorite breweries, New Holland Brewing :grin:

I have heard of Majolica also, but didn’t know what it looked like. I just remember my mom liking Delft.

2 Likes

That encampment sounds promising @StevesTrail , i wish you much luck next time you go out there.
And there’s indeed a lot of history in my area. Only thing is that the really old stuff sunk too deep into the soil in my part of the country. Where i found the buckles was also a Roman settlement, but i couldn’t reach those bits without an excavator or something hehe. Every now and then when i’m really lucky i find something from around the 13th century.
And i totally agree that it’s always full of surprises on the fields

1 Like

Thanks again for the info @Ziacat it’s very awesome, i’m gonna tell my friends about it (:
And they even have a Delft pottery atelier

2 Likes

Grab a 2017 or newer Whites TDI detector if you ever come across one @Bluegreen . A little different with a small learning curve but you can reach depths of two feet and deeper depending on soil conditions. I’ll be taking mine out next week since some of the ground has been re-worked. If you find one I can give you a lot of info, even a stronger battery spec to go even deeper.

2 Likes

Hi @StevesTrail that is some awesome info, thanks! I’ll keep my eyes open for a Whities TDI

1 Like

have any of you folks watched the “time team” series?

2 Likes