If you live in the US, and have cable TV, hopefully you have the History Channel offshoot, History International, and can watch a show called “Hidden Treasures”.
As a genealogist, it has kept me captivated through it’s all-too-short run (I think there are eight episodes). It’s being shown for the second time (at least), and was originally a BBC2 production (the website is located here (bbc.co.uk)).
Somebody correct me if I’m wrong, but in the UK, if you find “treasure” that is over 300 years old, usually using metal detectors (or pure luck), you have your find examined by the British National Museum, they give you a fair-market appraisal of what it’s worth, and they buy it from you, and it goes to a museum. If they or another museum are unable or unwilling to give you the fair-market value, then you are free to sell it. Either way, it can make your time and money spent on these treasure hunts pay off (and in some cases, quite handsomely).
Here’s the description of tonight’s show:
Retired teacher and metal detectorist Ken Wallace came across two silver coins in a field in Leicestershire, England. Within months he had found thousands of coins–the largest hoard of Iron Age coins ever dug up in Britain–buried at the time of the Roman invasion. The field is now rated among the top 10 Iron Age sites in Western Europe. But its discovery had to stay top-secret for over two years, and only now can we tell his story. Why were thousands of coins buried in this tiny field? Find out as our host and guide Miranda Krestovnikoff solves the mystery of the East Leicestershire hoard. Treasure–it’s all around us, and every day new finds bring history to vivid life.
It’s really neat, because they consult experts on the items and the areas they were found in, as well as experts on the time periods involved. Some of these people have come up with some amazing things from thousands of years ago.
It’s hosted by Miranda Krestovnikoff, who makes it enjoyable to watch for a couple of reasons, mainly because she seems genuinely interested in it (she’s a well-known wreck diver which is probably where she gets it from).