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Downright Archiness


Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2009
Frederick, MD.
The best archaeologists I have met were self trained and collectors themselves.
There seems to be a lot of ignorance on this site about archeologists.
People seem to lump them into an homogeneous mass and assign that the traits of the most outrageous few.
Unfortunately many of them probably judge bottle diggers in a similar way.
Makes me sad. Both sides have merits.


Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2009
Hillsdale, Louisiana
I think I have mentioned this before but I remember a fellow from a museum, not sure if he was an archeologist, that came to club meetings. Another member dug a lot of native american mounds and middens, usually just ahead of the bulldozers. They had a deal where the digger would bring in interesting finds and show them to the museum guy. Whether he donated items to the museum I don't know but it was a great compromise between the "official' guy and the digger. It would be nice if there was more cooperation between the two.


Well-Known Member
Dec 9, 2008
I wish we still had the insight of ole bearswede on this topic, Mr. Lobey, too.

Here's an old thread that features both, started by the story of the first Oregon Illegal Digging Dust Up: https://www.antique-bottles.net/forum/m-133684/mpage-1/key-archeology/tm.htm & Here's another: https://www.antique-bottles.net/forum/m-40213/mpage-1/key-archeology/tm.htm#50964

I think Mike Russell / CWBookAuthor can give some views across the abyss, should he care to engage.

The St. Augustine Resolution is the first step, to a codified law. This is something to worry on, were one a Florida digger. The newspaper account of Ms. Deagan's gauntlet throwdown,

"...Nobody who has taken the time to look at Florida Statutes — especially archaeologists — would challenge the statement that objects found in the earth belong to the owner of that earth. That is the law. But St. Augustine is an extraordinarily unique and special historical place, and it has been my experience that the great majority of St. Augustine citizens are eager to protect and contribute to our real history, and to share the revelations about history that are contained in their property with the whole community, rather than keeping the information secret and wearing it around their necks.

St. Augustine’s economy depends to a great extent on its history. Yet these articles seem to imply a certain eagerness to toss aside what make artifacts into history, and instead embrace what reduces them to fun and profit for a few individuals. This would be a national disgrace in Jamestown, Plymouth or Williamsburg. Come on, St. Augustine, we are better than that!" From.

doesn't use the accusatory "looter, pot hunter" invective, but "selfish treasure hunters" sounds so very Obamaesque. Good political move on her part. Were I Spratley, I'd be thinking of making a gift of knowledge to just about any archeologist or museum not affiliated with Ms. Deagan.



New Member
Nov 25, 2020
My family came here from england to farm for spain (land grant) so i get what you are saying about keeping historical artifacts public domain for generations of future residents to admire and learn from. However after seeing what the city does with these priceless artifacts is terrible. My friend Bob who passed recently lived in old town in a very old spanish home. his house was like a museum with artifacts from every civilization that ever called st aug home. after talking to him about the things he found over the years i was amazed to learn that the majority of all the cool stuff is sitting in a storage building in daytona, never to see the light of day or the public eyes ever again. Also the company "old town trolly" buys every historic building and its contents using about 1/100th of it in their exhibits. sadly most of the things on display are the rejects that the collectors didnt want. the rest is put into storage to be forgotten about forever. I believe that if the city is going to claim ownership of these items, then they need to do something useful with them. I always dig on private property with permission from owners. this city is no longer interested with history, only making money from crappy tourists from yankee states. If i found anything of historical significance id 1000% be keeping it for my enjoyment, and since my family has been here longer that about 95% of people "from St. Augustine" i dont feel the least bit bad about it.

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