Florida & The Citizen Archaeology Permit

A friend in Florida emailed me about this current proposal, and thought it was worth passing along.  I have tried to find details on when and how this proposal came about, but there doesn’t appear to be a lot of information out there about it.  This link simply suggests it was introduced by a “group of citizens in Florida“.  Of course Butthead in Warsaw (who now is an expert in all things Florida) gives credit for this proposal to “A group of artefact hunters (and amateur archaeologists?).   Gotta love the “amateur archaeologists” label and question mark, especially when all the detectorists I know would never want any such tag tied to them.

As the article states “In the past, Florida had an Isolated Finds Program (IFP) that allowed individuals to collect artifacts from state submerged lands, but the program was discontinued in 2005“.  It is also quick to point out that “Currently, under Chapter 267 of the Florida Statutes, all archaeological materials found on state lands or submerged in state waters belong to the people of the state” (so why can’t “people” living in the state have access?).

Given the source of the article it’s also quite understandable that it ends with the following…. “This proposal follows closely in the wake of 13 arrests in connection with a state-wide network of illegal artifact looting from state-owned lands. The arrests drew attention to the difficulties of preventing the loss of Florida’s abundant archaeological record and Native American history from unscrupulous or uninformed diggers”.

When I first learned of this Citizen Archaeology Permit proposal my reaction was that it’s a great idea, but then I realized this is the state of Florida, and does it even stand a chance in the state legislature? It also appears that our old friend Alan Hays is involved again and asking for feedback….

There are already, of course, lots of letters and statements from the archaeological community claiming foul (it’s  called “whining”).

Might this not be a project for the Task Force?

Will be following this one for sure….



Many thanks to Eddy Current for the following articles. If you are on Facebook be sure look him up, and keep updated on all things treasure hunting. Always, new and interesting articles on a daily basis. Thank you Eddy….

Shipwreck Intriques Archaeologists

Rock Turns Out to be Worth £3.5million

Snowy Landscape Reveals Ancient Remains



Hah, not the two trolls you are thinking of…sorry.  I am talking about Dave Wise and Todd Hiltz, two Yankees who just keep on finding neat things, and  pissing me off.  I will, however, admit the videos they keep sharing take me back a few years, and the spots shown remind me of sites I used to hunt.

I like to bust Dave’s chops in particular, but he’s a very good treasure hunter (however, if I run into him again I am cutting the wire to his coil).  Todd?  He’s an okay guy.  Just never figured out how he can stand detecting with “Heavymetalnut” (Dave’s alias on many forums).  Be sure to check out Todd’s (Hiltzy) other videos…he does a fantastic job.



Filed under Metal Detecting

17 responses to “Florida & The Citizen Archaeology Permit

  1. Scott

    I have yet to see if the 13 arrests were violations of the “isolated artifact” permit system by one group of criminals or 13 individuals violating the rules?

  2. Dave Wise

    thanks Dick! you ain’t so bad yourself :O)

  3. ” Gotta love the “amateur archaeologists” label […] especially when all the detectorists I know would never want any such tag tied to them.”

    It seems to have escaped your notice that the people pressing for this legislative change specifically refer to themselves as “citizen archaeologists” (hence the name of the permit). I do not think these are all “detectorists”, if you look, they are talking about prehistoric stone tools and bottles and the suchlike.

    I note you do not link to the post on this “Butthead’s” blog, where at attempt is made to discuss the wider context of this permit. Is there a reason for that?

    Scott, they were not violating ANY “isolated artefact permit system” since – as was pointed out in the above-mentioned posts – that ended in June 2005 and the arrests we are talking about took place a few weeks ago – fuller information on my blog, among other places.

    • I don’t refer people to your blog for the simple fact that your only purpose is to insult those that disagree with you. You troll 24/7 all the various forums, websites, looking for anything and everything you can use to come up with another anti-detecting statement or story.

      You receive no responses to your posts (except from your partner Nigel Swift who usually chimes in to support your biased opinions) because people know better. I am not stupid Mr. Barford, and know full well that you have been trying to get me or Lisa MacIntyre to respond by insulting her credentials, and opinions over the past few days.

      About the only way you will ever get traffic from my blog is to post as you did here today. So, with your link above, you have achieved your goal. Hope that makes your day…..

  4. No, the purpose of my blog – like yours – is to put over a view of artefact hunting and collecting. If I am critical of the arguments for maintaining a status quo and those arguing for it, that is because surely we can all recognize there is a lot to criticise.

    I really find it odd you referring to my presentation as “insulting” in a comment attached to a post where you refer to me as “Butthead” (in a blog which contains a plethora of insulting remarks about those with whom you do not agree, and has done for many months). Name-calling seems to be about the extent of the arguments the artefact hunters can offer these days – even on a blog which purports to be about some “Standards”.

    Archaeologist Lisa MacIntyre hastily waded into the discussion on the long-term effects of artefact hunting in the UK. I suggest her understanding of it is mistaken, she is quite at liberty to prove me wrong, but it really is no skin off my nose if she declines. I’m the one invited to give a seminar on it next month, not her.

    • For those of you who visit Stout Standards….

      Paul Barford is “supposedly” an archaeologist with a blog that has long been ignored by the majority of UK detectorist websites and forums. Any link to his page is deleted. The reason? He has nothing good to say about what we do, and in fact, his sole purpose is to undermine our efforts and put us out of business.

      He apparently is now aware of this effort to keep his blog out of the mainstream, and I intend to do the same. If you care to follow his efforts feel free to do so, but do not expect any more of his replies here on Stout Standards, nor will you see any links to his site. You may also reply to his posts and/or comments on his blog. I will not let Stout Standards become a vehicle for his attempts to to demean our pastime.

      As for my standards? They are indeed mine, like them or not, and frankly I thought Butthead was being much too kind.

      And yes, in case you missed it, Mr. Barford is THE ONE invited to give a seminar next month. I am impressed…..

  5. hmm, a visit from the PBNS… what a laugh that 🙂

    Thanks for the mention of my Facebook page, Dick! Please feel free to use any of the articles I post there, but as always the pleasure’s all mine… I’m most chuffed every time I see my Metal Detecting News make their way onto this blog of “Standards”…

    –Eddy C.

  6. ..it’s Brit talk meaning “pleased”, “delighted” etc –Eddy C.

  7. I’m wondering when Todd is going to invite me to detect with him? We do belong to the same club. Hint…hint…

  8. You know, I never had any attractive gals asking to go detecting with me and that makes me sad. No comments please from anyone, especially you Howland.

  9. thiltzy1

    Thanks for the comments Mr. Stout, at least I know I am getting someone’s attention.

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