A lesson in local history

  • from Huntington (West Virginia, United States)

imageFor most hobby metal detectorist local history and research are just as big of a part of their hobby, if not more, as going out to the local park and swinging a metal detector. Most of the time the research comes first. However, from time to time we find interesting artifacts the we have to further identify. One of the things that I enjoy most about the hobby is learning about human habits. The many places and ways we loose things offer a brief insight into our behavior. Rarely do metal detectoris ever get a chance to find out about the lives of the people who last held these artifacts before loosing them to the Earth. Finding a class ring in a local park can offer the opportunity to do some research, and learn about the people who make of our local community. Sure there are websites that can aid you in locating the owner of a class ring, but not all lost class rings have been reported as lost. Also these sites do not offer the same amount of local history, witch is valuable information to treasure hunters, as a school year book. My father recently found a 1982 class ring at a local park while we were out metal detecting. After cleaning the ring up we were able to see a set of initials in the inside of the band. We researched an old year book, from that year and found only two seniors with those initials. Only one of those seniors was male, and our ring was a mans ring. We had found the owner, but the yearbook told us more than that. We learned that the owner was an athlete and in several clubs. With a little bit more research we were able to determine that he still lived in the area and we are now able to place the owner back with his ring. That is a reward in its self, and one of the reasons I became a ring finder.