Maryland Free-State Treasure Club
Volume 3, Issue 5
May 2015
Monthly Outing * Swap and Sell  * October Treasure Hunts * New Minelab detector * New Detector: Nokta FORS CoRe * Bel Mar Coin Club * And lots More

Maryland Free-State Treasure Club Meeting Minutes, May 28, 2015: The meeting was conducted at the Victory Villa Community Center, 404 Compass Rd., Baltimore, MD 21220, 410-887-0258. Minutes were submitted by Dave Miller.

Call to Order: At 7:10 p.m. the meeting was called to order by the President, Mr. Gary Pennington. Gary introduced the club officers; Howard Shettle, vice president (who also oversees the Contest Board); Steve Cunningham, treasurer; Dave Miller, secretary; and Ms. Nichole Venker as our club meeting photographer.

Treasurers Report: Mr. Cunningham reported the M.F.S.T.C. has $2895,97 in the bank and $196.72 petty cash in coins and bills. Gary Pennington reports the M.F.S.T.C. currently has an account balance of $85.00 in the Recreation and Parks account.

Attendance: Gary Lawrence counted 32 members, guests and family members present at this meeting.

Free Raffle Tickets: Every attendee to our monthly meetings gets a raffle ticket for one of three silver coins just for showing up!

Refreshments: Mike and Gina Stinemire came through again with a cornucopia of delightful food for our members which included sloppy Joes and German potato salad among other filling and nutritious fare.

Raffles: Bill Hill and Leo Pollock managed the silver round and 50-50 raffle tickets at break time.

Merchandise Table: Gina Stinemire and Olivia Cornwell oversaw sales of bumper stickers, t-shirts, patches and gloves.

Swap and Sell: The swap-and-sell table, manned by George Venker is becoming more successful with every passing meeting. This is for metal detecting related items only. Bring in anything you want to swap or sell.

Meet the Member: Steve Cunningham played guitar and bluegrass banjo in various folk groups in the '60s while in high school and had a keen interest in the natural sciences. He also enjoyed scuba diving which took him to Mexico and Central America. He then attended University of Richmond with a major in marine biology and kept up his music throughout. After college he worked at Noxell Corporation while concurrently playing in various bluegrass music groups. In 1975 he did some research and secured a loan to open his own music store, Baltimore Bluegrass, Inc. on Belair Rd in Baltimore. He bought the commercial property which housed the store in 1986 which still provides income from four rentals. During the 25-year run of operating the store his interests were also directed toward musical instrument repair, fossil collecting, astronomy, sleight-of-hand magic and research. After joining the Maryland Geological Society in the '80s he became editor of their newsletter for several years. Steve's research focused on Eocene epoch shark teeth and he studied at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History and the British Museum of Natural History in London with British researcher and author David J. Ward. In 2000 he had a paper published in London; Cunningham, S. B., 2000. A comparison of isolated teeth of early Eocene Striatolamia macrota (Chondrichthyes, Lamniformes), with those of a Recent sand shark, Carcharias taurus. Tertiary Research 20(1-4): pp 17-31 which can be found on his study website,
     After retiring in 2000, Steve developed tremor in his hands and was no longer able to study the shark teeth or play a musical instrument professionally. He took up woodworking and still tinkers in his wood shop. In 2012 he developed an interest in metal detecting and joined the M.F.S.T.C. in September of 2012 where he currently holds position of treasurer and volunteers for various club needs and activities.

New Detector: Bob Taylor, of Taylor Metal Detectors who brings merchandise from his shop for sale at our meetings, announced the Minelab Go-Find, a great buy at a reasonably low price and three models with coils from 8" to 10". The detector folds onto a compact bundle perfect for keeping in the trunk of your car for those times you see an area you'd like to detect. Just unfold it and you're ready to go. Look up Taylor Metal Detectors on the 'Net.

May Program: Kurt Franz demonstrated the Nokta FORS CoRe (Coin and Relic) Metal Detector. Made in Turkey, it is a midlevel machine that comes with 11.2x7" DD waterproof search coil, headphones & 4 AA alkaline batteries. It is an all-terrain metal detector for use on any and all land sites as well as on a beach or in many water environments with a waterproof and submersible search coil. Choose from different search modes, ID Masking feature and advanced settings to minimize the effects of highly mineralized soils and hot rocks.
    Kurt mentioned that it is a good mid-range machine and is a little touchy around other models of detectors and possibly EMI sensitive.

Bel Mar Coin Club: Members Mike and Gina Stinemire volunteered to oversee a table representing our club at the Bel Mar Coin Club coin show May 30. Mike might have influenced several of the coin club members to join the Maryland Free-State Treasure Club. The Bel Mar Coin Club meets regularly on the 3rd Monday evening of each month, 7:00 p.m., at Grove Presbyterian Church in Aberdeen, Maryland.

Club Outing May 23: Another beautiful day for metal detecting and the digging was easy. Attending were Rick Pack, Brad Johns, Andy Cooper, Mike Folmer, Ron Riggs, Dave Miller, Leo Pollock, Bill Hill, Kurt Franz, Bill Wise, Nancy Sommer, Bill Pfaff, Charles Brandner, and Mike McCullough. Many artifacts were found which were donated to the museum on the property. The docents regarded our group with a very high degree of respect.

Members-Only Competition Hunt: The results of the May 2 Members-only Treasure Hunt was reported in the April 2015 newsletter.

October Double-Barrel Treasure Weekend: The Maryland Free-State Treasure Club (M.F.S.T.C.) is hosting our open treasure hunt Sunday, October 11 with the western theme "Old Dakota Mining Town." Information and Registration forms are linked from the home page of our website and will be available at our meetings. So far, we have eight detectors to raffle along with the other big prizes.
     The Maryland Artifact Recovery Society (M.A.R.S.) is hosting their "Silver Frenzy II" open hunt on Saturday, October 10. More information see

Contest Board Winners: Contest Board, "Leg-of-Gold," and Find of the Year rules are linked from the home page of our website.
Coins: 1st: George Venker; 2nd: Leo Pollock; 3rd: Bill Hill.
Relics: 1st: George Venker; 2nd: Nancy Jelich.
Club Favorite: Kurt Franz for his Love Token
Leg-of-Gold: Steve Cunningham

Adjournment: The May 23rd meeting was adjourned at 8:40 p.m. when members helped stow the folding chairs and tables.

Next meeting: Thursday, June 25 at 7:00 p.m. (Mini hunt starts at 6:30 p.m. outside weather permitting) June program: TBA on the website.