lost items in a fire Tag | The Ring Finders

Silver Coins Lost in house fire, Found !! Washington

  • from Spokane (Washington, United States)

Out of all of the texts and phone calls that I have received through The Ring Finders website, none of them took my breath away like the one that I received about a house that had burned down. The owners of the house had lost a large quantity of silver and were requesting my help to find the rest. Throughout the few texts and phone calls my remorse for their loss grew and grew. So I agreed to go to their house that day with my metal detector and try to recover what they had lost. While driving to the house I was trying to imagine what I would encounter when I drove into their driveway. However nothing I thought about could prepare me for what I saw. Where a once unique and timeless home stood, now sat the charred remains of brick and ash. After serving the basement where the house had fallen in on itself, I began my work with my metal detector. It blew my mind working in a house that had fully burned down. It was shocking to see only small fragments of wood that weren’t fully charred and finding hunks of metal that were fully melted to the point that they became liquid. My research of house fires revealed that an average house fire can reach between 1700 to 2000°F. Silver melts at 1763°F. So it’s likely their house fire could’ve easily have melted all the coins into one large clump. The other shocking detail is that the only items that were not turned to dust were nails, pipes and any other metal items that were inside the house. Using a Metal detector to find metal in a sea of metal is impossible. While scanning over the piles of soot and ash my white spectra V3i made an orchestra of sound. After I set it up to only find the silver that I was looking for I still had a problem. All metal detectors can’t see through metal. So using my metal detector was not a viable option. So I grabbed my sand scoop and began sifting. Each basket that I had scooped and shifted revealed a few pieces of silver. This ignited the spirit of the home owners and myself to further pursue the search for the lost silver. We looked for and constructed a lager but crude sifter. We placed two metal stove racks together and then began to shovel loads of rubble onto them. I was in charge of the shovel and the homeowner was holding the racks at an angle. This allowed the coins to be spotted as the debris slid down. Both our spirits hung onto every coin that revealed itself. When the coins stopped showing up, the overwhelming task of sifting out all the coins became daunting. However that was sober truth, no coin was going to be found if it wasn’t sifted out. So for the past three weekends I have loaded up all my gear, the 2×4 ft sifter I had made, two neodymium magnets, my whites spectra v3i, a rake and four five gallon buckets. I took all of these tools to help further my chances to find the coins. I also have to give credit to the homeowners, they knew exactly where in the house the coins were stored and gave me exact areas to start sifting through. The homeowners were the heavy lifters and I was the coin hunter. They would move all of the bricks and heavy metal items out of the way and I would sift through the nearly 863 cubic yards worth of debris. After sifting through where the coins should have been, I had to use my Ring Finders detective skills and think outside of the box. In one location the coins were above a set of stairs in a closet. If one could imagine them falling down they might have hit the stairs and cascaded in the opposite direction. In fact, as the second weekend concluded our shouts of joy rang out as a group of 30 coins was discovered. I was able to use my metal detector to find the group because the magnets I brought picked up enough metal to allow the metal detector to see the coins. In total I was able to extract 184 coins from the house achiving a 75% recovery of the total lost coins. The idea of the coins being lost for good might be hard to understand, however a large amount of melted globes of silver where also recovered in the ash. A once in a life time opportunity came to me because of a devastating event. However the faith of the homeowners to trust me to help them, shows me that the material possessions of this life are not as valuable as the act of trust and generosity to a complete stranger.