Anyone see the privy dig episode

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RICKJJ59W

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Like I said before (WHATS IT WORTH) its one thing to talk among ourselves as bottle diggers, but when the real world sees dollar signs,that translates into no you can't dig my yard ,I want what ever of value is buried there for my self.Rick
 

Oldtimer

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I'm sorry, but most people know the value of a buck, and most know if you're willing to dig 20 feet into an old sh!!t pit then there's MONEY involoved. I think it's as likely to intrique people as make them say "No"...I think most people are too lazy to ever dig them, and would be very interested to know what's down there...
People look for and collect everything from bottle caps to cars...more exposure helps as much as it hurts for any collecting hobby IMO.
 

JGUIS

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Last week we had a permission to dig, not a real great yard, but hey. We layed tarps, cut the sod, and had her old man(which was an Ahole to say the least) come out and run us off saying"I don't care what she said, you're not gonna dig a hole in my yard so you can go make money and not give us any." Several others in the last month or so implied that we make good money digging bottles. One guy told me that since he's been paying taxes on all the trash in the ground on his property, he feels he should be paid for me to take it out. And about every 15 or 20 people won't give permission, but want to know where the holes are, so they can dig them. I've also had people approach me in the middle of a hole, already knowing what I'm doing, and ask how much money I make doing it. If it were about the money, I'd get a different job for sure. The show would've been fine without ties to the financial part. Just a show about digging bottles, not getting rich off of it.
 

tigue710

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It would of been nice if they had gotten people interested the bottles themselfs and not the values... it ruined a lot of good holes for a while.
 

RICKJJ59W

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3 out of 20 people ask us about (money) and thay are just curious,we give then a few bottles and on we go.Rick
 

appliedlips

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ORIGINAL: Oldtimer

I'm sorry, but most people know the value of a buck, and most know if you're willing to dig 20 feet into an old sh!!t pit then there's MONEY involoved. I think it's as likely to intrique people as make them say "No"...I think most people are too lazy to ever dig them, and would be very interested to know what's down there...
People look for and collect everything from bottle caps to cars...more exposure helps as much as it hurts for any collecting hobby IMO.

I agree to an extent.The only difference is you are never going to make a no a yes with some TV show named CASH AND TREASURE which has an auctioneer making up stupid values for a hutch and showing off high dollar bottles.The people in the hobby that will benefit are the auctioneer who sells the great finds it stirs up that people already own and the high level collectors than can afford to buy them.What you will do is turn Yes's into No's.I prefer to sell myself at a homeowner's doorstep rather than have someone else give a false perception of the hobby to them.I would guess I recieve over 50% yes's when talking directly to a homeowner in person.I have lately been hearing more about money,and Rick is right most are just curious but there are some that want their slice of the pie.I am happy to share but I am not for hire or there to dig them a collection.My point is no digger can benefit from public exposure unless they are the type that can't ask for themselves or have the guts to dig a vacant.If you can't do neither of those,don't dig privies.I get sickened seeing all these "Privydiggers" writing articles looking for permissions to come to them,all the while letting others preconceive an opinion before I get to their door.The show sucked and so has every newspaper article or local cable show I have seen.Yes,I once did a local newspaper article it didn't help me in any way.The permissions I got,I would have got knocking on their door.There are nice people and not so nice people,That's that!Some of these guys,I wonder if they would even dig if they couldn't tell somebody about it.It is about the bottles for me,Doug
 

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SEE???[:mad:]

Backyard treasure hunters beware. A little-known Oregon statute makes it
illegal for anyone to intentionally unearth artifacts more than 75 years
old without a permit from the state - even on private property.

After local bottle hunter Dale Mlasko was featured in the Mail Tribune and
on the Travel Channel show "Cash and Treasures," he received a letter from
the state saying he may have run afoul of the law.

The Oregon State Preservation Office informed him that digging up items on
private property that are 75 years or older - even with the property
owner's permission - must be witnessed by an archaeologist and signed off
by the state.

Mlasko, 44, has been following his passion for hunting glass since he was
a young boy. He searches for bottles from the 1800s and early 1900s on
private property in Northern California and Southern Oregon.

He asks the owners for permission to look for old outhouses with a metal
probe, then offers to give them everything he finds. Sometimes they let
him keep what he finds, Mlasko said.

Mlasko said he was shocked to learn from the letter that "the excavation
activities depicted in the 'Cash & Treasures' episode violate Oregon state
law and cannot be condoned."

"I try to do everything in an ethical and legal way," Mlasko said. "Nobody
needs to desecrate sacred ground. But these are outhouses."

Susan Lynn White, Oregon assistant state archaeologist, said she doesn't
doubt Mlasko's "heart is in the right place." The state doesn't want to
appear punitive or arbitrary - or even prohibit Mlasko from digging, White
stressed.

"We're more interested in education, rather than punishment," she said.

But not everyone in the historic arena shares White's benevolent attitude.
After the "Cash and Treasures" episode ran, Mlasko received "anonymous
threatening letters from so-called archaeologists," he said.

His episode was savaged on a related Internet-based forum, Mlasko said.

One post, signed Scott Wolf, associate archaeologist of ASM Affiliates
Inc., ended a finger-wagging rant with the condemnation, "Your ignorance
and irresponsibility makes me sick. SHAME ON YOU, SHAME ON YOU, SHAME ON
YOU!"

"I did not know this law was in effect," said Mlasko. "I don't even keep
most of the stuff. I give it to the property owner."

The law treads on property rights but protects the public's history, said
Jacksonville historian Marshall Lango, who went searching for an abandoned
backyard privy on his property and found bottles in the early 1970s,
before the law was in effect.

"It's an interesting dilemma," Lango said. "If you went digging in your
own backyard, it was considered a no-brainer. I really question if there
should be a law about digging in your own backyard."

Cost also is an issue - especially for private homeowners, he said.

The state permit is free. But depending on the nature of the site, a
property owner may have to pay to have the excavation overseen by a
qualified archaeologist.

"That's the reality of it," said White.

Local universities will sometimes send out an archaeologist - with
students in tow - for free. But if that option is not available, the owner
will likely bear the professionals' costs, said White.

If the excavation took several days - or even weeks - it could be
cost-prohibitive, said Lango.

"That would be a real problem if three or four people spend several weeks
(on your property), and you're paying for that," Lango said. "If the state
was willing to fund the dig, that would be different."

Lango applauds the state's effort to learn from the past - even a past as
recent as the Great Depression, he said.

"If I could do it again, as long as I could keep what was found, I would
love to have had a real educated look," said Lango.

Unless it's human remains, the objects discovered belong to the property
owner, White said.

"But we do ask if the owner would like to donate the artifacts to the
Oregon Museum of Natural and Cultural History in Eugene," she said.

Jacksonville resident Larry Smith wholeheartedly supports the laws.

"People need to be sensitive. Once you move a bottle, once you move an
arrowhead, the historical significance is reduced," said Smith, executive
director of the Jacksonville Woodlands Association.

There are seven cars buried in the woodlands area, including a 1947 Nash
and a 1948 Ford pickup chassis. The cars were dragged to old mine sites
and dumped down shafts, Smith said.

"They were dumped in our woodlands," said Smith. "We can't touch them
because they are on federal land, rotting away."

Because the old junked cars were not a natural part of Jacksonville's
mining history, they likely can be removed, White said, depending upon
federal regulations.

Property owners shouldn't worry about violating the law if artifacts are
unearthed while digging up an old septic tank or putting in a new fence.
Inadvertent discovery of historic matter is not illegal. However, the
digging should stop until the state's preservation office is notified and
can assess the situation, White said.

"Everything is context," she said.

From those bottle-containing privies can come a wealth of other historical
information of interest to archaeologists, said White, adding that
everything from the types of bottles found to fossilized feces provide
indicators about the people who lived there.

The protective historical laws were created (and revised) between 1983 and
1997, White said.

"We always go by a case-by-case basis, because the most interesting cases
come up," she said.

In Multnomah County, in 2004, ground-penetrating radar was used to
discover a secret previously unknown to local historical societies. The
county wanted to sell property adjacent to the old Lone Fir Cemetery.
Previous historical records showed Chinese burials were adjacent to the
site but the remains had been disinterred and shipped back to China for
reburial in the 1950s. But the radar was still discovering what appeared
to be bones. White's office was called.

"Most of the calls we get are (regarding the discovery of) human remains,"
said White.

Test trenches in the property's parking lot revealed china fragments and
coffin corners, and fragments of human remains.

It turned out that only the males' remains had been removed, White said.

"The women and children were left behind," said White.

Within hours, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, the state
historic office and the county had agreed the area should remain
untouched, White said.

The county retained the property, demolished an old building, and a
Buddhist monk blessed the site. The county will be erecting a monument
commemorating the burial site, White said.

"There was a sensitive resource there with the remains," said White.

Mlasko said he will dig more in California, where there aren't such
restrictive laws, but intends to comply with Oregon law when working
locally. Indeed, he thinks it would be interesting to share knowledge with
an archaeologist. But the law will have a chilling effect for many of his
fellow hobbyists.

"A lot of bottle collectors have gone underground," said Mlasko.

***********************************************
Archaeological sites: What the law says

A person may not knowingly and intentionally excavate, injure, destroy or
alter an archaeological site or object on public or private lands without
first obtaining an archaeological permit, according to a series of state
laws. The one pertaining to private lands is Oregon Administrative Rule
736-051-0090. On private or public non-federal lands, an official
archaeological site is defined when it has 10 or more artifacts that are
75 years or older located in a concentrated geographic area, said Susan
Lynn White, Oregon assistant state archaeologist. Violation of these laws
is a Class B misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail, White
said.

"Removal of human remains is a Class C Felony," she adds. "The state
police can be contacted and the site shut down."

Oregon law also prohibits a person from selling, purchasing, trading,
bartering or exchanging an artifact that has been removed from an
archaeological site on public, non-federal land or obtained from private
land without the written permission of the landowner, White said.
*********************************************

For more information, contact White at 503-986-0675 or e-mail
Susan.White@state.or.us.

Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 776-4497 or e-mail sspecht@mailtribune.com.
 

bearswede

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Great info, Josh... Thanks for posting that... Oregon's laws are much more restrictive than here in New England... Massachusetts only restricts excavation of human remains (quite understandable) on private property... We also have an open-use policy regarding private land... If the land is not posted (or posted properly), you are not trespassing until the owner tells you you are... Naturally, it's best to obtain permission, but sometimes it's difficult to find and contact the owner... Anyway, I think we can all agree Oregon's laws are way too restrictive when they interfere with digging on your own land!


Ron
 

Mainepontil

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Prehistoric sites should be protected but historic trash on private land is fair game.

The historic period has been well documented, but now that bottles are commanding big money archaeologists would rather go for the glory and dig these sites as opposed to the MUCH MORE IMPORTANT pre historic sites.

The crazy part is archaeologists would rather have sites destroyed by development.
They don't want to admit that an artifact found and taken out of context but preserved in a private or public collection is better than one lost forever.

Hopefully there is a smart digger out there that can get elected to state office and get that law revised so that only pre-historic sites are protected.

This country is getting more screwed up by the day !!!!! Can you say police state.
 

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