MXT Finds Confederate Cannon Ball
By: Jessica m.
I wanted to relate the story of one of my best finds ever this past summer! I was hunting for relics along Lee's Retreat Route in Central Virginia. As I walked through a section of tall hardwoods next to a very old, rutted out road bed from the Civil War I was finding the normal shotgun shells, but not much else. The woods were really "quiet". I was hoping that I could finds relics that were discarded or dropped from wagons as they made their way up the hill along the old roadbed. I had heard that there was a Confederate artillery position on the opposing hill, but didn't even think about the possibility of finding ordnance. I was about to be surprised. Suddenly I got a nice long signal that rang in around +24 on the display. The "ends" of the signal were broken however, and it reminded me of previous signals I've gotten that turned out to be large pieces of iron. I dug down about ten inches and still had a very strong signal in the hole. Finally at about 12 inches I hit iron. As I cleaned out around the metal, I could see that it was rounded, and about the right shape for a Civil War projectile. A minute later I rolled out a beautiful Confederate 12 lb. side-loader cannon ball! My first! I had a big celebration right there in the woods. It was very hot, and I was drenched in sweat, but I didn't care. Initially I thought it was a solid shot ball, but as I cleaned it off I could see the fuse adapter with the original paper fuse still inside! It still amazes me that the paper survived that long. I found several bullets that day also, but they were just icing on the cake compared to the wonderful relic I had just found.