Grave Robbers Identified…

Thanks to Eddy Current for the following update on the Burke County cemetery situation.  Apparently those responsible  were drug dealers, not treasure hunters, and I am very happy to hear that.  I hope too that this is the end of the story, and that in the future people will think twice before using the  words “relic hunter” whenever something similar happens.


I will still stand by last post that we should have addressed this situation as soon as it happened  and helped in some way.  JMO.



Back on the 29th of March I shared a video of Dave Wise and Todd Hiltz hunting an old colonial cellar hole. Well, a few days ago they went back,  and Dave had what I would call “the greatest day detecting ever”. Here’s a photo of his finds that day.

Five George Washington Inaugural Buttons...all found in one outing.

Five George Washington Inaugural Buttons…all found in one outing.

Yep, not one, but five….what are the odds?  Dave, fantastic day and congratulations!!  Hoping Todd taped this and will post it. You can view all of his videos on YouTube by typing in thiltzy1.



Okay, you saw Dave’s fantastic finds above, but you ain’t seen nothing yet! Take a gander at the following photo.  I managed to get out some yesterday and  brought these puppies home…..

My "hoard"....

My “hoard”….

So there Dave. Damn it, eat your heart out!!



I like to share this from time to time because it’s a gem. Jim Lewellen was the CEO and president of Fisher Labs, and passed away a few years ago.  He was a stand up guy, a gentleman, and a helluva lot of fun to be around.  Miss you Jim….

The Ten Commandments of Metal Detecting, by Jim Lewellen

  1. Thou shalt not leave behind unfilled excavations.
  2. Thou shalt not trespass or defy in any way the lawful decrees of thy city, state, province or country.
  3. Thou shalt not harm vegetation, the creatures of the field, natural resources or the personal property of others.
  4. Thou shalt not covet the finds of thy companion. Nor shall ye covet his metal detector, digging tool, or the hallowed place he diggeth.
  5. Thou shalt not neglect thy family and friends whilst in the endless pursuit of this hobby.
  6. Thou shalt assist the distraught owners of lost goods, and the archaeologists, the enforcers of law, and all others who may need thy skill as a metal detectorist.
  7. Thou shalt return found treasures to the proper owners, whenever their true identity can be rightfully determined.
  8. Thou shalt report to the proper authorities any find relating to criminal activity or of archaeologtical significance.
  9. Thou shalt be considerate of others on the beach, and in other public places whilst waving thy searchcoil, and digging holes in the sand and soil.
  10. Thou shalt speak out against unjust laws and stand firm against the Philistines who would cast out all those who would use detectors of metal.


If thou dost not abide by these Commandments, may ye be plagued with mineral-bearing rocks, hard packed soil, pestilence, serpents,  locusts, poisonous vegetation, and great multitudes of pulltabs, bottle caps and rusty nails.  May ye spend the remaining years of thy wretched life digging signals of false origins. For thine iniquities shall surely bring the overzealous wrath of the ignorant, heathen bureaucrats down upon those of us who are innocent.  For we are the righteous and the just and ye who do not obey the Ten Commandments of  Metal Detecting are doomed to bad luck.



Apparently the O’Fallon city council heard from the Task Force, as well as a few detectorists, and it made a difference.  Hoping these new changes get approved. 

Thanks Task Force and all those who took the time to voice their feelings…..



Filed under Metal Detecting

12 responses to “Grave Robbers Identified…

  1. Wow Dick-can I hunt with you next time? Those finds look a little more familiar to me than Dave’s. Awesome finds for Dave though. What a great day that must have been!

    • Dave’s finds were absolutely out of sight, and I am not sure how he tops that. Detectorista you can hunt with me anytime….just don’t tell my wife.

  2. We at American Digger Magazine were proven correct in our original assessment: these were NOT relic or treasure hunters. The press, because of conditioning by those who hate what we do, are too quick to blame such on our hobby. No one who really cares about our hobby knowingly digs a grave. That said, NOW is the time to contact the caretakers and see if we can help correct the damage done by these despicable criminals.

    • Glad you were right, and I was wrong Butch, and yes let’s see if we can get some good PR from helping these folks. Not sure how that might happen, but I will see what I can find out.

  3. bill from lachine

    Glad to see they got caught…’s beyond words how anyone can stoop so low……I hope they both get prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

    Regards + HH


  4. Is that TWO silver dimes I see? Epic.

    Seriously though, five GW inaugural buttons. Amazing

    • Yeah, he beat me up and just about any other treasure hunter on that day….and yes two silver dimes. Given the time I put in I figure I was making about 2.50 an hour.

  5. Mike Smith

    I will try and get an address of the caretaker’s of the cemetary. I will try and see if our local metal detecting club members are willing to make a donation and send it to them to help in the restoration. If I get an address I will pass it along.
    Nice finds Dick! I went out for a couple hours hunting the Gulfport, MS beaches this past weekend and only came away with a dime and a lot of trash.

    • Thanks Mike. I put in a call this afternoon the city hall/Waynesboro, and the lady who answered gave me the number of a James Smith, who called me back later. He was no longer involved with the American Legion but was going to pass along my number. Let me know if you have any luck, and I will keep you posted too.

      As for my finds, they were not even in the same league as Dave’s.

  6. Mike Smith

    I finally received a call today from the American Legion Post 120 Commander Leroy Bell, Jr. His was grateful for my call and would welcome any donations to the restoration of the graves, as the Post has few members.

    You can send your donations to:
    American Legion Post 120
    PO Box 91
    Waynesboro, GA 30830

    Make your checks out to “American Legion Post 120” and at the bottom of your check write “Old Church Restoration”. This will make sure your money is used for the restoration project.

    I am gathering donations from my local club members on May 7th, our next monthly meeting, and sending it out the next day. I hope you or your local metal detecting club will do the same.
    This will be a nice way to show that the metal detecting community is not the “grave robbers” that we are made out to be by the archaeology community and the media.

    Please share this information with family, friends and your club!

    • Thank you very much Mike…good job. I will share this as well in my next update. I will get my check off tomorrow.
      Let’s show these folks how much we care.

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