Here are a few of


Favorite Treasure Hunting Websites

For ghost town chasing, metal detecting/treasure hunting (TH'ing), prospecting, genealogy, and searching for old towns your ancestors lived in, as well as lots of other interesting links, these sites are well worth visiting...

There are literally thousands of related websites out there, and this list is not intended to be all inclusive. 

These are just a few of the sites I find interesting.  I hope you do too.

Please be advised, there are no Geocaching sites listed. 

Happy web surfing!


The Ghost Town Guru






General Notes for folks new to the hobby of Treasure Hunting


If you are either unfamiliar with, or new to the hobby of treasure hunting/metal detecting, there may be a few terms you see on these or the linked pages that may seem unfamiliar.  In general, most treasure hunters use metal detectors to search in the ground for lost coins, jewelry or metallic relics.  There are MANY facets to this hobby, but the majority of treasure hunting hobbyists fall into this category.


Since the early 1960s most metal detector users have been called treasure hunters, which was popularly shortened to “TH’ers.”  Treasure hunting was also abbreviated to “TH’ing.” During the past 15-20 years those abbreviated terms have been mostly replaced by the term “Metal Detectorist.”  As time goes on, even that term is being slowly replaced by “Metal Detector User, or Metal Detector Enthusiast.”


No matter what you want to call yourself, this is a great hobby, and one that truly can enrich an avid pursuer.  I hope this helps clarify a few terms not commonly used outside the hobby.


On another note, and wonderfully appropriate for this section is a nice link I have put up at the request of a school class.  These future leaders are revamping their classroom website with “new sections, information and fun stuff for students, teachers, parents, etc.,” and have added some treasure hunting links.  One of them is Alan Bernau Jr’s site called “A Guide to Metal Detecting for Beginners.”   I think it is a great refresher course for all of us in the treasure hunting field to go back to the basics once in a while and remember, we all started out as beginners.  I want to thank Ms Ward’s class in Delaware for telling me about this link and hope you all enjoy it also.  Ms. Ward, I hope all of your students get a chance to “Get Outside” and enjoy this wonderful hobby. You can even have them toss in a little ghost towning while you are at it!


General Sites

Western & Eastern Treasures Magazine

This is the online home for the magazine I’ve been writing for since 1980, and has featured my monthly Ghost Town USA column since April 1984.  It is the how-to magazine of choice for metal detectorists.


Gold Miners Headquarters – Information Center for Prospectors

In addition to its Internet links, this international recreational gold mining directory lists over 500 businesses that do not have an Internet web site!  ”This is the largest directory in the world and a great effort to help our gold mining community. Please help us help others. Show your support to the Gold Miner's Headquarters! Miners helping Miners...”


Lost Treasure Magazine  

This is the online home for Lost Treasure Magazine.

The largest Treasure Hunting Forum and Community on the Internet! We have discussion forums that cover a wide range of treasure releated topics, from the Shipwrecks to Metal Detecting. Coins, Gold Prospecting, Techniques, Preservation, Mapping, Ghost Towns, Stamp Collecting, Fossils and everything in between.”  To fully access all the site has to offer, you must become a member, which is free.  This site also has a new mobile app for your iPhone, iPad or android-based smart device.



This general interest site is a good introduction to the Treasure Hunting Hobby.


Specific Interest Sites








Antique Bottles & Bottle Collecting


Antique Bottle Trader


Glass Insulators Reference Site


Bottle & Pot Lid International Collector’s Webring

Lists a lot of bottle-related links








California Bricks


National Building Museum


Texas_Brick Collecting



United States Mint



My Coin




A connoisseur’s guide to Tokens, medals, buttons, badges, ribbons, World's Fair, political, Masonic/fraternal, Indian peace medals and slave tags.  If you collect this type of exonumia, this a great site for you.  Rich Hartzog also sells hundreds of books to help you identify your finds.


Hard Times Tokens


Saloon & Brothel Tokens


Trade Token Catalog

                        Over 400,000 different trade tokens are listed on this huge site.





SEE:  Specific page with links to LICENSE PLATE clubs and collectors.







Treasure Hunting Equipment Manufacturers/Distributors



METAL DETECTOR Manufacturers


WHITES Electronics

Metal detector manufacturer & publisher of my book, Dust in the Wind –A Guide to American Ghost Towns.


BOUNTY HUNTER Metal Detectors

Metal Detector Manufacturer


FISHER Metal Detectors

Metal Detector Manufacturer


GARRETT Metal Detectors

Metal Detector Manufacturer


MINELAB Metal Detectors

Metal Detector Manufacturer


TESORO Electronics, Inc

Metal Detector Manufacturer


TROY Custom Detectors

Metal Detector Manufacturer (Manufacturer of the Shadow Metal Detector)







Big Valley Metal Detectors

A Sacramento-based, multi-line metal detector dealership.


Detector Electronics Corp.

Metal detecting accessories.


Detectors Unlimited

 “Detectors Unlimited is an authorized dealer carrying all brands of metal detectors including Tesoro, Bounty Hunter, Garrett, Troy, Hays and Detector Pro at maximum allowed manufacturer discounts. The right equipment yields results! Visit them today.”

This multiple-line metal detector also carries a full line of metal detecting accessories.  (GBS note)


Hays Electronics

Metal detector sales, accessories, books and maps.


Jimmy Sierra Products

WHITE’S metal detector distributor and general treasure hunting accessories.


Kellyco Metal Detectors

Multiple line metal detector “Superstore”



This is an online “Superstore” featuring all major brands of metal detectors and accessories.


Metal Detectors of Minneapolis

Multi-line metal detectors sales, accessories, books, maps, videos, and recovery tools.


Pioneer Mining Supplies

Gold prospecting and metal detecting equipment superstore.  Located in Auburn, CA.


Reilly’s Treasured Gold

Multi-line metal detectors sales, accessories, books and maps.





General Treasure Hunting Clubs/Organizations




FMDAC – Federation of Metal Detector and Archeological Clubs. 

This is a National organization dedicated to preservation of recreational metal detecting, as well as protecting the rights of individual metal detectorists.  Many local clubs affiliate with this organization.

NOTE:  It doesn’t appear that this site has been updated since 2011.


Kelly Co links to Metal Detector Clubs



This is a good list of updated metal detector clubs with an online presence – State=by-state.




            Arizona Treasures Unlimited, Inc.

Based in the Phoenix area, this active club has been around since 1970.  The club’s purpose is stated on their site.  “Arizona Treasures Unlimited, Inc. (ATU) is a nonprofit corporation registered in the state of Arizona to promote the safe and lawful recovery of lost and abandoned objects through the processes of research, education, and the distribution of information.”



California Wreck Divers

Club Mission Statement – “To perpetuate the awareness of maritime history through organized exploration, research, restoration and display"


Prospectors Club of Southern California

“The Prospector's Club of Southern California is a legally chartered, non-profit corporation - Dedicated to gold prospecting, metal detecting and treasure hunting.” 


Riverside Treasure Hunters Club

Based in Riverside, this very active club meets the first Friday of the month at 7 PM at Eldorado Park Community Center in Upland.  It serves treasure hunters located throughout the greater Inland Empire. 


Treasure Hunters Society of Santa Clara Valley, Inc.

This club is based in San Jose, in the San Francisco Bay region and has been around since 1976.


West Coast Prospectors & Treasure Hunters Association 

Another Southern California-based treasure hunting club with a large web presence.  It is quartered in Garden Grove and is the parent of the famed West Coasters Rendezvous, a fun three-day organized treasure Hunt that draws folks from all over.



            Hood Canal Detectorists Club

                        This active club operates out of Belfair, WA, which is on the west side of Puget Sound across from, and southwest of, Seattle.







World-Wide Association of Treasure Seekers

Based in Texas (USA), WWATS is an international organization “The Focus of WWATS is to be an information center, providing special training as necessary to understand our relationships with, and to openly approach, our government agencies, seeking ways our hobby can co-exist within the rules and regulations used to govern public lands today. WWATS shall be a proactive organization, not a reactive one.





Specific Interest Clubs/Organizations





Clubs for Antique Bottle Collectors


Baltimore Bottle Club


Los Angeles Historical Bottle Club


Additional links to bottle sites from the Baltimore Bottle Club


National Insulator Association


San Jose Antique Bottle Collectors Association

This local bottle club is located in San Jose, CA and has been around since 1958. When I was a college student at San Jose State University back in the early 1970s, I was able to participate in one of their massive bottle digs as a friend of mine was a member (at that time.)





International Brick Collectors Association




American Numismatic Association




National Token Collectors Association




SEE our specific page with links to LICENSE PLATES clubs and collectors.







Government Information Sources



US Dept of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management

Mostly new items, but current public land information can be found here along with historical information.




Links to various websites and pages are listed in the following categories…



·        General Ghost Town sites

·        Individual States/Provinces

·        Individual Sites

·        History/Travel



·        General Sites

·        Specific Interest Sites

·        Treasure Hunting Equipment Manufacturers/Distributors

·        General Treasure Hunting Clubs/Organizations

·        Specific Interest Clubs/Organizations

·        Places to find treasure

·        Government information sources



·        Book publishers/sellers

·        Periodicals 



·        Clubs for License Plate Collectors

·        On-Line Collector Buy/Trade & Sell Forums

·        A few other misc. websites of interest to license plate collectors



·        General



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LINKS last verified: January 04, 2015

Last updated: January 04, 2015


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