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finding mason jars

clubhouse baker

New member
I'm new to this forum and I'm hoping someone can point me in the right direction. I recently purchased a tract of land in the mountains of North Carolina. Several of my neighbors have told me stories about a man who settled the land back in the 30’s and would bury gold coins inside mason jars. At first, I thought they were pulling my leg, but I've had several neighbors confirm this story. One older gentleman said that his daddy saw the coins because this old settler confided in him and wanted to tell him where the stash was buried, just in case something happened to him. His daddy declined because he didn't want to bear that responsibility.

Apparently, this old settler was on his death bed when his friend asked him where the stash was buried, but he was too ill to fully explain the location. All he could utter was "sssss". When he passed away, many of the neighbors at that time searched the land, and even took apart his house looking for the jars and coins but came up empty handed. The house is long since gone, but I've been told roughly where it stood. Last night another neighbor of mine was asking me about it and said that several people before me have used metal detectors but still couldn't find it. They are all convinced the stash is still buried somewhere.

I have some ideas; maybe the old man was trying to say "spruce" because there are some very large spruce nearby where his house stood. There is also a stream that’s located behind where his house was located. Maybe he was trying to say that. He could have been trying to say “cellar”. There are remnants of a stone cellar close to where his house was, but I have to believe someone has already searched that. Who knows?
My question is where do I start and with what equipment? I've never used a metal detector before. So, should I rent one at the local rental place, or should I purchase one? I also found an online business that rents them as well. This is a 40-acre tract of land, so who knows what else I could find, if I make a hobby out of this. I should also point out that while cutting down trees for firewood, I have stumbled across quite a bit of iron and metal junk. Back in the day, they would just throw this stuff over a small bluff, along my driveway. So, I would expect to find a lot of junk along the way.

I'd appreciate your advice. Thanks,


New member
Stashes/caches are usually not buried very deep; unless there has been extensive landscaping, floods, or landslides, those mason jars are likely no more than 2 feet deep. A "deep-seeking" detector pulse induction (PI) would not be necessary, nor is a multi-frequency type. A quality, general-purpose detector of moderate price ($200-300) should do the trick. I do not have the scope of experience to recommend a specific make or model. I am partial to Minelab, so you can't go wrong with a Xterra 305, or the new Vanquish 340/440. Many USED 305's and 705s can be found at very good prices. I got my Xterra 705 Gold Pack for $250, used...

Garret AT and ACE series, Fisher F series, and Teknetics "Greek" series are all established brands with good reputations and many forum topics and videos to learn from. Check out as many as you feel is necessary to make an informed descision.

With a lot of ground to cover, you should check if you can get a large coil (13" or larger) to match up with your detector. A little more depth, and more area covered per sweep. Unfortunately...extra coils for Minelab detectors are a little pricey. Aftermarket coils for other brands may be a bit lower in price.