So I’m out in the heat in a yard in Nashville, TN approaching the end of what has been a great hunt and a good virgin yard. I get a signal that is in the 90 percentile on my detector – the ones that are usually cans or a big falsing deep horseshoe or other piece of iron. And when I start to dig it is deep. I dig 18 inches a little at a time, pull some of that deep dirt out of the ground onto my towel I use to keep my plugs clean and BAM! A well-worn 1878-CC Morgan dollar.
It’s rare I get emotional about a find. It is particularly surprising when the emotion is unexpected and seems to come from nowhere. I got pretty emotional when I dug my first pre-1900 silver coin, but nothing compared to this. I could hear my heart beating out of my mouth. I had to make myself breath and calm myself down. The gentleman I was hunting with looked concerned for a split second.
The reason I was so surprised at my reaction is that I have hunted for silver coins for over 30 of my 34 years of detecting – I’ve lost count, but am likely quickly approaching 1000 silver coins. I’ve found several halves but never found the elusive silver dollar. I still love to dig silver, but I’m really into the Civil War items right now – it seems like every few hunts I am digging a “first”. It’s like starting over detecting again after 30 years.
In fact, just an hour or so before I dug the Morgan I had just dug my very first Federal Staff Officer’s button in the same yard a beautiful, perfect uncommon Civil War relic. So I was already excited. I certainly didn’t expect for my head to explode at my next big find.
The fact is, for me the Morgan Dollar was a Unicorn. I never thought I’d see one pop out of the ground. I guess I’d imagined and fantasized about digging one from when started detecting as a teenager.
I wouldn’t change a thing about it. It is well-worn and I imagine it was someone’s lucky coin they carried for years. It is a first year, an uncommon Carson City mint mark, and a “key date”. And oh what a thrill it was to dig!
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