Howdy!! Log In Register A New Profile Link Exchange Image Resize Terms of service Extras

Anybody interested?

DIV Frequently Asked Questions

DIV Photo Gallery
DIV Checklist

Diggin' In Virginia XLVI
November 4th - 6th, 2019
Diggin' In Virginia XLVII
November 7th - 9th

Participant List

Release Form

Participant List

Release Form

Please use the other forums on the Spot for non-DIV related post.
Diggin' in Virginia is in NO WAY affiliated with any other "organized" hunts.
We DO NOT have any contact information for any principals of any other "organized" relic hunts.
PLEASE DO NOT email or call us for information on hunts other than DIV!

Anybody interested?
March 05, 2012 04:42PM
Direct from Minelab as posted on Tom's Treasures Forum ( )

New Program Encourages Collaboration Between Metal Detectorists and Archaeologists

CHICAGO, IL— MARCH 5, 2012 Minelab Americas, the largest manufacturer of metal detectors in the world and James Madison’s Montpelier, the home of the Father of the Constitution, today announced the launch of the Minelab Archaeological Certification Program (MACP). The new program will help metal detectorists and archaeologists work together to make quicker more systematic discoveries, while preserving historic site integrity. The pilot class will convene on the grounds of Montpelier, James Madison's Orange, Va. home, next week.

“The Minelab Archaeological Certification Program at James Madison’s Montpelier marks a partnership between Montpelier and Minelab Americas to expand the education of archaeological disciplines into artifact recovery," said Gary Schafer, vice president of Minelab Americas. "The partnership is a revolutionary effort to bring together the latest in metal detecting technologies and the best practices of archaeological artifact recovery. This effort will ensure that our two communities continue to work together to preserve history in a sustainable way for all constituents. The opportunity for Minelab’s best metal detector enthusiasts and distributors to participate in this annual learning effort on these historic grounds is a benefit we are proud to offer in partnership with the staff of James Madison’s Montpelier. The learning opportunity this program provides is significant for all studies of historic preservation.”

Minelab and Montpelier collaborated to develop the MACP curriculum. Both organizations will work to develop the pilot certification into a program that holds broader professional recognition in the future.

The pilot class consists of 14 authorized Minelab dealership owners and associated representatives. Participants will work with Montpelier's archaeology staff to explore the area where Montpelier's field slave quarters once stood, as well as survey for sites in the forests surrounding the plantation. Throughout the six-day program participants will learn how to preserve site and artifact integrity, while directing archaeologists to the most promising excavation sites.

“The partnership between Montpelier and Minelab represents an incredible opportunity for us to take advantage of some of the most advanced metal detecting technology available today, and to bring in experienced metal detector enthusiasts to help us identify artifact-rich sites on Montpelier’s historic 2,700 acre property," said Dr. Matthew Reeves, Montpelier, director of archaeology and historic landscapes. "Involving Minelab as a new partner in the process of archaeological discovery helps us uncover lost history which can help bring to life the home and lives of James and Dolley Madison. It is also an opportunity to show the metal detectorist and archaeology communities how both can work together to discover and preserve historic sites."

The public is invited to watch the metal detectorists conduct surveys in the field slave quarter area. The survey site is a short walk from the Montpelier Visitor Center.


March 12 (Monday): 10:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.; 1:00 p.m.–3:30 p.m.

March 15 (Thursday): 9:00 a.m.–11:00 a.m.; 12:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

March 16 (Friday) 9:00 a.m.–12:15 p.m.; 1:30 p.m.–4:00 p.m.

To inquire about Minelab metal detectors, please visit or call 1-888-949-6522.

To learn more about James Madison’s Montpelier, please visit or call 540-672-2728 x115.

ABOUT Minelab Americas: Since its origins in 1985 Minelab has been, and still is, the world leader in providing metal detecting technologies for consumer, humanitarian demining and military needs. Through devotion to research and development and innovative design, Minelab is today a major world manufacturer of hand held metal detector products. Over the past 27 years, Minelab has introduced more innovative and practical technology than any of its competitors and has taken the metal detecting industry to new levels of excellence.

ABOUT James Madison's Montpelier

Montpelier is the lifelong home of James Madison, Father of the Constitution, architect of the Bill of Rights, and president of the United States. Now that the home's $25 million architectural restoration is complete, visitors can see the progress of rediscovering James and Dolley Madison through the "Presidential Detective Story" with daily guided tours. They can also leisurely stroll the garden and forest; and take in the galleries, hands-on activities, and many other attractions on the estate's 2,650 acres. Nestled in the rolling foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Montpelier is located in the heart of Virginia's wine country on Route 20, four miles south of Orange, Va., and 25 miles north of Charlottesville, Va.

Montpelier is administered by The Montpelier Foundation, which seeks to inspire continuing public engagement with American constitutional self-government by bringing to life the home and contributions of James and Dolley Madison. Montpelier is a National Trust Historic Site.

~~ "There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure." Mark Twain ~~

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2012 04:43PM by Creskol.
Great Idea
March 07, 2012 04:07PM
I think every company should offer something like this. I'd be interested. It would also offer another revenue stream for companies.
Great News for the Hobby
March 07, 2012 11:19AM
That is great news! The video Minelab shot at Montpelier with Dr. Reeves was very well done.

Our local club, S.H.R.R.A., helped archeologists at the Chalmette Battlefield document the advance of British troops towards the Rodriguez Canal where Jackson's army was entrenched. When we located a target we flagged it. Then an archeologist entered the location into a GPS. After the target was recovered ( we were allowed to dig it ) , it was entered into a large GPS device along with the digger's name, date time of recovery etc. and the relic or trash was turned over to the archeological team. It was a fascinating experience. At the end of the project a map produced as a result of the "dig" clearly showed the advance of British Troops based on artifacts recovered.

Hopefully, there will be enough publicity about the Montpelier project to counter the ridiculous "reality" shows now being broadcast. Minelab and Montpelier are to be congratulated on a very fine effort that can do nothing but enhance the reputation of our hobby while portraying us in a much better light.
Having known Dr. Reeves........
March 07, 2012 06:51AM
For many years I can say that he is one of the good guys. I helped out at the Stonehouse, Matthews Hill and Deep Cut projects and also helped Dr. Reeves at Montpelier locating President Madisons parents house. We actually were able to locate the original kitchen which was later fully excavated. I truly enjoyed that experience although digging every nail in the area the size of a house can get tiresome but absolutely necessary to get the big picture. It's amazing to see all the nails plotted on a graph.

Folks have to understand the archeologists believe that the undocumented removal of artifacts is counter productive. I have to agree to a point. In an area like a Civil War Battlefield of any other historic area like Montpelier, it should be left up to the "experts". A very good case in point is the Centreville Six project. Our own Kevin Ambrose had the foresight to call in the Smithsonian when he located a CW soldiers grave on a soon to be McDonalds site. Turned out to be six soldiers. You can look at the Centreville Six Facebook page for many video and updates. The Civil War relics recovered by the average hunter will NEVER be excavated by archeologists and what we do is bring artifacts into the public domain to be enjoyed by future generations. Dr. Reeves agrees and is one of the few "enlightened" archeologists who sees the value of having "expert" detector operators do a lot of the leg work. You won't see him calling us pot hunters and looters.

A big hoorahclap to Dr. Reeves and Minelab! Only positive things can come of this!
That was cool to find that kitchen And man did we dig some nails!!! (n/t)
March 07, 2012 02:53PM
This message does not contain any text.
Well said John and a very interesting reply! (n/t)
March 07, 2012 09:24AM
This message does not contain any text.
I volunteered a couple of days to detect at the Monocacy Battlefield.
March 06, 2012 02:07PM
They were very nice to me, and even enjoyed seeing some bullets I happened to have in the truck that I had recently dug at another site (private property). But I'll warn you - they love nails! They didn't want me to discriminate at all.
I would pinpoint a target and they would dig it while I watched. Pretty neat.
Re: I had the honor......
March 06, 2012 06:36AM
and privilege to hunt under Matt Reeves when he was the head archaeologist at the Manassas Battlefields back in the 1990's. Members of the NVRHA were solicited to help do surveys at the Stone House, Matthews Hill and over by the Deep Cut on the 2nd Manassas Battlefield. The Park Service was either extending or building new parking areas at all these sites and we had an opportunity to search the area for artifacts. Of course we worked hand-in-hand with Matt Reeves and his graduate students flagging "hits. Once we completed a grid, we would dig up the hits with a graduate student in-tow. They would then record the item found, at what depth, etc. and bag the items.

It was worthwhile and made a believer out of Matt Reeves that metal detecting had a place in the archaeological field. Now, to caveat all of that, we also had to put up with the Park Rangers who unfortunately, were not as thrilled as Matt was of us being on-site. It was my experience (and my experience only) that every time they were around, they would make sure we detectists heard stories about how they caught people illegally relic hunting on the battlefield and how they made sure they got the full penalty under the law..........

Anyway, I would recommend you participate if you can. You have a unique opportunity to shed light on the history of Montpelier that may have never been known unless you all applied your detecting skills at the site. Also, if I am not mistaken, there may have been Civil War activity there too.

Good luck....and as I said before, Matt Reeves is one helluva guy to work with!
This message does not contain any text.

~~ "There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure." Mark Twain ~~
This message does not contain any text.

"I do my duty until the moment when battle begins: I then leave the matter to God." - General Robert E. Lee
that is awesome wished I could make it to this event.. This could play a pivotal roll in bridging the gap and healing the wounds Our hobby has receive here recently... Cudos to Minelab for get this ball rolling...
It will be a little bit of both, Bob. Some of the targets will be dug, and some will just be marked to be dug later on in the summer.
Thanks Van
March 06, 2012 12:16PM
I am glad that they will be able to participate in all aspects of the recovery process.

"I do my duty until the moment when battle begins: I then leave the matter to God." - General Robert E. Lee
That sure sounds like a good program. You are right Rob,
March 05, 2012 09:49PM
with some of the recent negative press, it's a start. It would be nice if they could expand it to other brands of detectors in the future....
If I were going a day or two early to DIV it might be interesting to watch.
March 05, 2012 06:07PM
I've known about this for a spell, and a few of our DIV comrads will be there.
My only problem with it is that its Exclusively minelab, and minelab dealers. I'd like to see it open up to include a whole lot more. Still, its a beginning.
I know a lot of folks will have a problem with something like this, but I think its a GOOD thing. If both sides keep hardnosing things (and each other) , we will NEVER reach any consensus, and we will always be viewed as thieves and looters.
The UK has a good handle on this, and its mutually benificial to both Detectorists and Archies over there. Maybe programs like this will help pave the way for something similar here in the states.
One can only hope, because without it, it will always be an uphill battle to preserve our detecting rights. Anyway, good luck to the participants of this program. I know you will make us proud.

"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb deciding what to have for dinner. Liberty is a well-armed lamb."
This message does not contain any text.
This message does not contain any text.

~~ "There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure." Mark Twain ~~
This message does not contain any text.
Shucks .. I never wash .. but I am going to go watch anyway. (n/t)
March 06, 2012 07:10PM
This message does not contain any text.

~~ "There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure." Mark Twain ~~
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login

Online Users

Guests: 225
Record Number of Users: 92 on September 29, 2016
Record Number of Guests: 2955 on October 07, 2019