Category: Buttons

Navy Button ID Help

I dug this button on an old hunted out site today.  The house that was on this site was destroyed over 50 years ago.  I have dug coins on the site as old as shield nickels.  I dug a CSA uniform button about 100 feet away, as well as various other Civil War period relics.  The location is very close to a spot that saw limited skirmish action in my hometown (the courthouse was burned after Confederate cavalry ran a small contingent of colored Union troops out of the building.)

It appears to me to be a Navy button.  The size is 18mm.  The back mark is “Scoville Mfg Co. – Waterbury.  Any help on identification and date would be appreciated.

12.18.12 Button Front

12.18.12 Button Back

I got out for a couple of short hunts today.

This morning I met my buddy LEROY247 for a brief field hunt on an old homestead and Civil War skirmish site.  We were both hoping to find a little bit of old silver … but it was not to be.  We each found a couple of flat buttons, though.  You can see in the pic below that my big one still has some gilt on it!  It is marked “Silvester Birmingham.”  I did a little online research and found that there was, indeed a gentleman named Silvester who owned a button company in Birmingham, England, which he sold around 1850 to emigrate to Australia.  The other is a tiny oval-shaped button, evidently from a ladies’ garment.  It was very difficult to locate.

My coolest find this morning was the fired pistol ball (not sure of the caliber).  I also found a knapsack rivet, a brass spoon bowl, and a couple of pieces of buckshot.

This afternoon I returned to the church site where I’ve been digging the last few afternoons.  I dug 13 coins total, including three wheat pennies and a 1943-P War Nickel … MY 150TH SILVER COIN!!!

It was an awesome detecting day!

12.17.12 Finds

My latest video …

I’ve been out on several short hunts lately. No stellar finds in recent weeks, but I have gotten onto a few decent digs.

Here is my latest video, with story and pics below.

I hit up an old school in my community that was only used for about 10 years. It was just after the “age of silver,” around 1965-1975 or so. I didn’t hold out much hope for finding anything good. But I managed to dig 57 coins, including 7 wheats and these two “bonus” silvers!

I also dug this old “Senior Key” from 1988. My heart skipped a beat when I rolled it over in my plug. I thought it was gold at first. It is initialed on the back, and with just a little detective work I managed to find out the name of the owner. She still lives here in this community. I’m waiting to get her number from a friend and reunite her with her lost jewelry this week.

Finally, yesterday I hunted a trusty cornfield with my buddy, Western KY Digger. I pulled several flat buttons, pieces of buckshot and various small lead pieces, as well as a brass o-ring and j-shaped hook. Hard digging, but lots of fun. Digger dug a rather large flat button and the biggest zouave button I’ve ever seen.

Thanks for reading and looking! I hope to have more for you next week. I’m working on permission for a couple of new spots.

I had a great week this week. No decent coins to speak of, but I keep pulling curious relics out of this old Kentucky ground.My first (and coolest) find this week was on Monday. While hunting a familiar piece of ground, I got a sketchy but repeating signal at eight inches. By far the deepest target I’ve dug on the site.

I was mystified when I pulled this out of the ground …

Here’s a reverse view.
I had no clue what it was. A disc with a curious General Service eagle and a strangely wide shield. A FMDF member quickly identified it as a “sash” belt buckle from around 1855. It was marketed for both civilian and military use, and is apparently one of the rarer forms. He posted a picture of an intact buckle here …

Here is a picture of it in context, with several other (what I believe are) Civil War era artifacts from the same site:

Then yesterday I hunted for a short while at a couple of different sites. I hunted an old home site near a Civil War skirmish location with Western Kentucky Digger in the morning. I only found a very small, shankless, flat button.

Afterwards, I went downtown to our local park. It is SOOOOOOO trashy, so I was only digging deep targets. Then I got this solid 42-44 VDI signal at about 4 inches in depth. Flipped the plug and found this little baby!
It’s 15 mm, and either a Yankee cuff or kepi button. Still has a little gilt on it.

Here’s a pic with a ruler for perspective:

Curiously, it was a tin-back button, as evidenced by the rust …

This led me to have some authenticity doubts, since there have been re-enactments on this site for the last two years or so … but I have difficulty believing that a button could go that deep in that short a period of time. I’e consulted with a couple of local CW diggers, who have assured me that there were, indeed, tin-back versions of this size button, especially on the kepi hats. The ones I’ve talked to seem to think that it’s the real deal.

Pretty cool …

Here’s my latest video, with both of these finds and more. Enjoy, and HH!

Garrett GTP 1350 & PP, Whites MXT / Oldest Coin – 17** 1/4 Cut Spanish 8 Reale / Silver Coins – 120 / Coin Count – 2,453 / Clad Total – $168.38

Feature:  The New York State Militia Button!

I am absolutely, completely, totally, out-of-my-mind thrilled and flabbergasted.

This hobby is so cool …

This afternoon, after several hours of research and writing, I decided to get out and enjoy the weather.  🙂  I took off at 3:00 in search of a place to detect.  I’ve had my eye on an empty lot in town for quite some time.  You see, there are many empty lots that people abandoned years ago and the city now keeps them up, cuts the grass, etc…  This lot is right on the “edge” of town and easy to access.  So I hit it.  I only had about two hours until dark, so I was moving pretty fast.

Boy, am I glad I did.

About 30 minutes into the hunt, I got a solid 45-47 VDI at about three inches of depth.  Intrigued (I hadn’t seen anything in that range up until that point today), I dug.  And out popped this gorgeous, golden, button!!

It is a New York State / Militia button!  The back mark is “Steele & Johnson.”  I’m no button expert, but with the little research I’ve done it looks to be authentic Civil War era.  Dropped by a New York Militia soldier right here in Cadiz, Kentucky.  Unbelievable!

I also dug a toe plate, which I normally associate with Civil War sites.  Perhaps this unit simply traveled down this road into town??

I dug some other interesting stuff besides the button.

This lovely 1900 Indian Head …

A nice old 1919 “greenie” Wheat Penny …

The oldest Rabies Tag I’ve ever found …

I also dug a curious looking key, a HUGE stick of pure lead, and another 11 coins totaling 53 cents in clad.  Here’s a total pic (minus the clad):

Thanks for looking!  Video will be rendered and posted in the morning!

Western Kentucky Digger invited me out to hunt with him at a Civil War skirmish site / old home site. Actually, there are multiple old home sites in these fields.

Anyhow, before I tell too much … here’s Kentucky Diggin’ – Episode 11!

I dug some flat buttons, a rivet, a piece off of a toe plate, some small pieces of flattened lead, and various other whatzits.

But the BIG war find for me was this 20mm Union Eagle Button! A first for me! Any info would be most appreciated …

Here’s a picture of the flat buttons and other stuff. I found one other “item,” but I’m saving that for another post.

Thanks for looking!

Marine Button Restoration Update

I’ve been working on my Marine Corps button for the past couple of days.  I was hoping to get rid of some of the crud and get a glimpse at some type of mark so that the forum button wizards can make an ID.

It looked like this out of the ground …

Now, here’s the fruit of all my labor …

And I did manage to squeak out a mark …   you can just see a “… S & CO …”

Eager for more info!  Thanks!

Well … let’s get started with the newest episode of Kentucky Diggin’!

I hunted yesterday for a couple of hours at an old homestead house.  No joy on that one.  Dug a 1942 Wheatie and some relics, but nothing earth-shattering.

So, this afternoon, I went back to my old hotel.  I had only been hunting 20-25 minutes when I stumbled across this amazing find.  A U.S. Marine Corps uniform button!

I need some forum button “experts” to weigh in and tell me a date on this button.  It’s about 29.5 mm in diameter.

Two questions?  How old is it, and how can I clean it?

A few minutes later I dug this awesome spoon …

The back is marked, “Am’n Sterling Co.”  But it doesn’t look sterling.  Another mystery.  Here’s the mark …

Besides a pile of old trash and various “whatzits,” I did manage to pull my one and only coin for the day … an 1893-O Barber Dime!  It’s my fourth silver of the year (all dimes, and all in the 1800’s … interestingly enough), and the fifth silver found on this site.

Here are the pics …

Thanks for looking!  Be sure to go to my YouTube channel and hit the “subscribe” button!