They call it dirt fishing.They call it dirt fishing.

Anglers of the earth searching silently across a sea of corn stalks.

Then, like a tug on the line, there’s a buzz.

And like any person who hopes they’ve snagged the big one, an excitement fills Lynn Kelley-Miller of Plattsburgh as she kneels to the ground.

Kelley-Miller was one of hundreds of dedicated detectorists drawn to Chazy last weekend for the “Pound the Ground: Adirondack Coast” metal detecting festival.

‘DREAM COME TRUE’

As Max Yasgur did for Woodstock half a century before, Lance and Michelle Rovers opened up their farmland for a weekend of music (courtesy of St. Andrews Pipeband of Vermont and other local performers), memories and more than a little history.

The event, organized by metal detecting club Rhode Island Relics and local metal detecting enthusiast Peter Sorrell, saw roughly 1,000 acres of the Rovers’ fields opened to metal detecting hobbyists from around the country and the world.

Where international detecting hunts regularly span such acreage, organizers said the Chazy event was likely the largest the United States had ever seen.

“This is really a dream come true,” Jeff Muthersbaugh of Rhode Island Relics said of the event and its turnout.

HIDDEN TREASURE

Organizers said detectorists from all 50 states as well as Canada, England and Turkey made their way to the North Country for the chance to detect on the historical property.

Along with horseshoes, bucket handles and other evidence of the property’s agricultural history, attendees dug up scores of military relics.

Reflecting on the weekend in a Facebook post, David Wise of Connecticut shared the story of digging up a plain-looking pewter button.

“Packed the pewter button in dirt in a container and didn’t see much on it at the time,” Wise wrote.

But cleaning the button at home turned up a surprise.

“The whole time, I had a War of 1812 script infantry (button) and didn’t even know it.”

Shawn Sherrill of Arkansas dug up what is believed to be a button from the 26th Regiment of the British Army from the Revolutionary War era.

Half of metal detecting for historical treasures, he said, is reading up on where they might be found.

“You learn the history, learn the troop movements.”

HUSBAND AND WIFE

But even relics without the historical weight of a military emblem were exciting for those who found them.

Kneeling down to start digging, Kelley-Miller soon uncovered a metal stake of some sort.

Though the history behind the find was a bit unclear, she was thrilled.

As she dug for the stake, she had explained that pings from a detector can sometimes be for things as small as bottle caps or other specks of metal.

To turn up such a large object was a success for the hunter, who started her metal-detecting career about two years ago.

Her husband, David Miller, is a member of the Champlain Valley Metal Detecting Club.

One day, David let Lynn borrow his detector to give the hobby a try.

“And I didn’t want to give it back,” Lynn said with a chuckle.

IN OUR AREA

Lynn echoed many attendees in praising the organizers for pulling the event together.

“We’re really lucky to have such an amazing event in our area,” she said.

Chazy Town Supervisor Bill Arthur said the community was happy to welcome the travelers.

Though unable to the event attend himself, Arthur said officials he spoke with "said everything was respectful and well-done and it was a great success." 

Rovers Farm co-owner Danielle Rovers pointed to the benefits of events such as fishing derbies and the Battle of Plattsburgh Commemoration in drawing in crowds to boost local business.

The Rovers met Sorrell when he approached them to ask permission to do his own detecting on their property.

The family agreed to open their land to the Pound the Ground event when Sorrell approached them about it and Melissa said the organizers had done well in managing the festivities.

And of everything that the attendees discovered that weekend, Melissa said she’s always glad when travelers find that “there’s more to New York than Albany and the south.”

Sorrell said plans are in the works for a 2020 event. They call it dirt fishing.

Anglers of the earth searching silently across a sea of corn stalks.

Then, like a tug on the line, there’s a buzz.

And like any person who hopes they’ve snagged the big one, an excitement fills Lynn Kelley-Miller of Plattsburgh as she kneels to the ground.

Kelley-Miller was one of hundreds of dedicated detectorists drawn to Chazy last weekend for the “Pound the Ground: Adirondack Coast” metal detecting festival.

‘DREAM COME TRUE’

As Max Yasgur did for Woodstock half a century before, Lance and Michelle Rovers opened up their farmland for a weekend of music (courtesy of St. Andrews Pipeband of Vermont and other local performers), memories and more than a little history.

The event, organized by metal detecting club Rhode Island Relics and local metal detecting enthusiast Peter Sorrell, saw roughly 1,000 acres of the Rovers’ fields opened to metal detecting hobbyists from around the country and the world.

Where international detecting hunts regularly span such acreage, organizers said the Chazy event was likely the largest the United States had ever seen.

“This is really a dream come true,” Jeff Muthersbaugh of Rhode Island Relics said of the event and its turnout.

HIDDEN TREASURE

Organizers said detectorists from all 50 states as well as Canada, England and Turkey made their way to the North Country for the chance to detect on the historical property.

Along with horseshoes, bucket handles and other evidence of the property’s agricultural history, attendees dug up scores of military relics.

Reflecting on the weekend in a Facebook post, David Wise of Connecticut shared the story of digging up a plain-looking pewter button.

“Packed the pewter button in dirt in a container and didn’t see much on it at the time,” Wise wrote.

But cleaning the button at home turned up a surprise.

“The whole time, I had a War of 1812 script infantry (button) and didn’t even know it.”

Shawn Sherrill of Arkansas dug up what is believed to be a button from the 26th Regiment of the British Army from the Revolutionary War era.

Half of metal detecting for historical treasures, he said, is reading up on where they might be found.

“You learn the history, learn the troop movements.”

HUSBAND AND WIFE

But even relics without the historical weight of a military emblem were exciting for those who found them.

Kneeling down to start digging, Kelley-Miller soon uncovered a metal stake of some sort.

Though the history behind the find was a bit unclear, she was thrilled.

As she dug for the stake, she had explained that pings from a detector can sometimes be for things as small as bottle caps or other specks of metal.

To turn up such a large object was a success for the hunter, who started her metal-detecting career about two years ago.

Her husband, David Miller, is a member of the Champlain Valley Metal Detecting Club.

One day, David let Lynn borrow his detector to give the hobby a try.

“And I didn’t want to give it back,” Lynn said with a chuckle.

IN OUR AREA

Lynn echoed many attendees in praising the organizers for pulling the event together.

“We’re really lucky to have such an amazing event in our area,” she said.

Chazy Town Supervisor Bill Arthur said the community was happy to welcome the travelers.

Though unable to the event attend himself, Arthur said officials he spoke with "said everything was respectful and well-done and it was a great success." 

Rovers Farm co-owner Danielle Rovers pointed to the benefits of events such as fishing derbies and the Battle of Plattsburgh Commemoration in drawing in crowds to boost local business.

The Rovers met Sorrell when he approached them to ask permission to do his own detecting on their property.

The family agreed to open their land to the Pound the Ground event when Sorrell approached them about it and Melissa said the organizers had done well in managing the festivities.

And of everything that the attendees discovered that weekend, Melissa said she’s always glad when travelers find that “there’s more to New York than Albany and the south.”

Sorrell said plans are in the works for a 2020 event. 

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