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Modern Day Treasure Hunting

Updated on November 6, 2013

Mention the words treasure hunt or treasure hunter and most people will probably imagine a pirate with a peg leg, eye patch and a parrot. In his hands he has a faded old treasure map with an "X" marking the location of the treasure. While the image of a pirate looking for buried treasure may not be very realistic, that doesn't mean that there isn't treasure out there to be found. Treasure hunting movies usually take the viewer to distant, beautiful locations, full of adventure. But the truth behind treasure hunting is that it may be much closer than you think. Most real treasure hunters may never find a chest full of gold coins and precious gems, but there are many other forms of treasure that the average person can find, there are even some highly valuable treasures that have been found lately. Let's take a look at some of the ways you could look for your own treasure.


Backyard Treasure Hunting

The first place you might want to check for treasure is right around your own home. Believe it or not, there are people that don't trust banks. There have been times through out history where hiding your valuables seemed safer than a bank. The great depression in the U.S. is a great example of a time when many people did not have faith in banks. As a result there were many people that would find ways to hide their valuables. There are many places that are possible hiding places around your house.  Inside walls, under floor boards, in ceiling tiles and under the kitchen sink are places that may have been seen as potential hiding spots for money, jewels and other valuables.

Another place to hide valuables is in the ground. Some people have hidden their possessions in containers that they have buried around their property. Popular places to hide items are areas that are easy to remember for later. Gardens, where the dirt is soft, the edges of driveways or buildings and near fence posts are all places that could be used to hide something. These spots are easier to locate again to retrieve the item.

How can you find these items? Well, if you ever buried anything as a kid, you might remember that sometimes it can be difficult to find it later when you are looking for it. Maybe the person that buried the items has passed away, especially if the items were hidden back during the depression. If the person has passed away or simply couldn't find the items, they may still be there to find.

Using A Metal Detector

Have you ever been at a popular beach or park and seen somebody combing the area with a metal detector? Well, maybe that person is just a geeky coin collector trying to find pennies and dimes in the sand or grass. Or maybe he earns hundreds of dollars by finding things that other people have lost.

By the very nature of places such as beaches and parks, hundreds, if not thousands of people may visit that location over a year. With that many people traveling through, there are bound to be items dropped or lost. Sometimes it is trash, or maybe it is a pocket full of coins, worth less than a dollar. But sometimes it can be worth more.

Imagine someone on the beach getting ready to jump into the water. They may be worried about their wedding ring falling off or getting lost, so they take it off and leave it with their towel or other items. After a couple hours, they are ready to leave, but have forgotten about the ring. As they pick up their towels and other items the ring falls off into the sand and is buried as the sand shifts under their feet.

That ring, or ear ring, or necklace, waits in the sand until someone else discovers it. Maybe someone just happens to kick it loose and notice it on the sand, or maybe someone with a metal detector comes along and locates the jewelry beneath the sand. The quality of these finds can vary greatly, the jewelry could just be cheap discount store type jewelry, all the way up to pieces worth several thousand dollars. While you are unlikely to make thousands of dollars on each outing, the value of the jewelry can add up, eventually leading to a very respectable amount of money.

Treasure hunting with metal detectors can even include your kids. If you want, you can even hide some coins on a small section of beach or your own backyard to make an easy kids treasure hunt for them to enjoy.

Gold Caches

What is a cache? A quick definition of a cache is something of value that is hidden to be recovered at a later time. We already discussed some of the caches that may have been hidden by average people, there are come caches out there that may be worth far more money.

Many of us in the U.S. are familiar with stories about bandits in the "Old West." I know as a kid I was fascinated by movies and books that included stories of masked men robbing stage coaches and being chased by the U.S. Calvary. While many of those stories have been embellished, there is truth to some of these stories. Think of famous villains, such as the James brothers. How much money did they take over their lifetime? Sure, much of it was spent, but was all of it? Maybe, maybe not. There are many more stories of bandits that hid the spoils of their illegal activity so that they could escape without the extra weight and bulk. Or to avoid being captured "red handed."

Sometimes they returned to collect what they stole, other times they may have been killed in the chase, or like we mentioned above, maybe they just couldn't find everything they had hidden. There are still caches to be found, but you may not know how. Research, research, research.

Many stories about hidden treasure have some portion of truth to the story. Maybe the treasure is gone, or maybe there isn't as much as the stories say there is, but that doesn't mean it isn't there somewhere. A true treasure hunter will research dozens of stories about lost or hidden treasure. They will research old newspaper articles, journals, legends, anything they can get their hands on. Many of these stories will lead to nothing, or will be so vague that there would be no hope of finding anything.

Occasionally, through research, a treasure hunter might discover references to land marks, buildings or other items that can still be located today. Once landmarks are located or identified, there is a more tangible location to start looking. It may take many hours if not months looking in an area, but sometimes that hidden cache might actually be located.

Treasure Hunting

While you may never find a treasure map, with an X marking the spot of chests full of treasure, there are still treasures to be found. For the adventurous, patient person, there are many opportunities to satisfy that desire and curiosity about being a treasure hunter. Why not try your hand and finding your own treasure? You never know what you might actually find...


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    • Adventure Colorad profile image

      Adventure Colorad 5 years ago from Denver,CO

      Thanks alocsin, your house may not be real old, but if someone dropped coins around the time that the house was built, they could have some value. You never know...

    • alocsin profile image

      alocsin 5 years ago from Orange County, CA

      Using a metal detector is something I've always wanted to do but never had the time. I doubt anyone left treasure in our backyard since the house is only about 50 years old. Voting this Up and Useful.

    • profile image

      joshua 5 years ago

      i'm going to find tresur

    • Adventure Colorad profile image

      Adventure Colorad 6 years ago from Denver,CO

      I'm glad you enjoyed it Jonathan. The UK is a great place to practice with a metal detector as there is a lot of history that you could uncover, more so than a lot of the US has.

      Good Luck!

    • Jonathan Grimes profile image

      Jonathan Grimes 6 years ago from Devon

      Great hub on a sublect close to my heart and think it's one of the best hobbies as you just never know what is going to come out of the ground. I have had a few interesting finds myself in my time, of which you can see three here at (lovely coins, two of which are medieval hammered coins).

      Its great you mention treasure in the backyard as running the metal detector over my garden I came across a military badge from the first world war.

      Great hub on a great subject.

    • Adventure Colorad profile image

      Adventure Colorad 6 years ago from Denver,CO

      I'm glad you enjoyed it, it's easy for kids to get into the idea, hopefully this article will increase other to as well.

    • prektjr.dc profile image

      Debbie Carey 6 years ago from Riverton, KS, USA

      Sounds like fun! My sons loved looking for treasure in the yard when they were younger!

    • Adventure Colorad profile image

      Adventure Colorad 6 years ago from Denver,CO

      Thanks skeeter, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • skeeter747 profile image

      skeeter747 6 years ago

      Great read liked it alot ! Thanks

    • Adventure Colorad profile image

      Adventure Colorad 6 years ago from Denver,CO

      Thank you for the comments Simone, glad to see you stopped by.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 6 years ago from San Francisco

      Awesome! I'm all for keeping the treasure hunting spirit alive XD