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Someone on the Let’s Go Digging commercial rally FB page has just said about a Finds Liaison Officer:

“Kurt Adams cost Let’s Go Digging possibly the best and most productive site they ever had. He went behind the scenes and made arrangements for himself and the local History society to take over the investigations as to a potential major historical discovery”

No, he acted correctly. He’s not your acquisition agent, he’s there to maximise the amount of knowledge which can be extracted from that site for the public. Your use of the ugly phrase “productive site” gives your game away. It’s the knowledge, stupid, not how many artefacts you can get for yourself, and that can only be extracted professionally else much will be lost.

Do you get it now? Detectorists assume “I found, so I must have a stake in ownership and extraction”, but it’s wrong and childish, as is the constant use on their forums of possessive pronouns, my farmer, my permission, my find, my treasure. None of it is true. Nothing in the fields is ever theirs, it all belongs to the farmer or occasionally society, and in the case of “a potential major historical discovery” they have no moral right to take their spades to it. That would be to knowingly destroy history.


There is only ONE way to properly extract important knowledge for Society, not two. (Perhaps PAS hasn’t made it clear enough?)


More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting


November 2020

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