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I came across these photos this morning and couldn’t remember if I had shared them or not. A friend & customer up in Oregon was detecting along when he dug up this old .45-75 rifle cartridge. He almost tossed it into the bushes, but noticed there was something wrapped around it. A closer inspection revealed that a piece of cork had been shoved into the open end and a wire was wrapped around to keep it secure. He decided to take it apart and find out what was inside. What happened next is something many of us dream about, but for him it actually happened. He pulled out the cork and watched in shock as nugget after nugget rolled out! The cartridge had been converted into a makeshift gold poke for an old-time miner. The five small nuggets inside didn’t add up to a lot of weight, but what an amazing piece of pioneer history. Incredible find, thank you for sharing with us! 

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That is a heck of a find!

Don't let the forest service see these types of things if you find them. A ranger stopped my 11 year old and I the other day for no reason on our way out of our claim. She asked him directly (not me) if he found any relics besides gold. Fortunately he said no. She then told us that if we had removed anything older than 50 years she would have to write us a citation. I could not believe she asked him the question and not me. Luckily the only targets we dug were 3 dinks and 2 buckshot.

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Hey Matt,

That’s a shame to hear you guys were hassled, and I agree that it’s sneaky to question the minor before the adult. Kudos to your son, he sounds like a smart kid. 

Laws like this are so foolish. There’s nothing wrong about wanting to preserve and protect our historical sites for future generations. They are our heritage and a testament to those that came before us, and deserving of our respect. I get that, but what I don’t get is the people they target; like you and your son. The real threat in my opinion are the vandals armed with spray paint and hundreds of rounds of ammo. I can’t even tell you how many old stone cabins and adobe structures I have run across over the years that are tagged with all sorts of graffiti and filled with more holes than Swiss cheese. These people are the real danger to our antiquities, not the guy out in the field digging a few shallow holes with his detector. The current mindset here in the US seems to be, “It’s better to let those relics rust away into oblivion versus someone actually digging them up and preserving in a private collection.” I think if our laws were closer to those over in Europe we would see a lot more cool artifacts showing up in our museums…
 

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Exactly Chris! They hammer on the good people that just want to enjoy the history of the peice. My boys love finding the old relics and rusty stuff. It goes in our yard, or on display in the house where all of our friends and family can admire them. We have several conversations a year over them like " I wonder what the person was like that used this, or if this relic could talk, what would we learn". To me that is preserving our history, and people get to enjoy it and talk about it and even touch something that they may have never seen before. In my eyes, its ours, not the BLMs or Forest Services. 

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BLM, Forest Service and other  Government agencies.

Many of the people in the bottom layer of the bureaucracy have common sense and good intent. 

I believe that if they were in charge things might be done much differently.   

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