As a Land Broker, I have a lot of opportunities to look at properties that will be going on the market for sale or are already on the market. I am always amazed by the things I come across that offers clues of past ownerships and land use or natural remnants of the wildlife using the property.
Many properties are in areas utilized by the Union and Confederate Armies for camp sites, staging areas or battle grounds from the War between the States. There may also be old home sites, farm sites and cemeteries located on the tract.
A Walk-Through Nature:
Get off the ATV and investigate wood lots and fields for evidence of past uses by walking the property. There are hints you can use to indicate that an area of the property may have had past uses. Old aerial photos and maps can assist in identifying areas. Also, search the landscape for daffodils, old crepe myrtles and other plants and trees not necessarily native to the area. Cisterns, chimneys, old rusty vehicles and farm implements are sure fire signs of past habitation. I once identified an old wagon road on an early government survey that lead to a ferry crossing across the Big Black River. The old trail happened to run through a food plot on the property and for years produced horseshoes, ax blades and other things from the past lost or left along the way.
Once an area has been identified, the use of a metal detector and a small spade for digging will help uncover buried items like housewares, old tools and farm implement parts. Areas where Civil War camps and battles occurred can yield uniform buttons, medals, round balls or gun and knife parts.
Antler Shed Hunting:
Beginning in late February through the early spring, whitetail bucks shed their antlers. Look for sheds in areas where food sources are available, along fence crossings, creek crossings and deer trails you may have found during the hunting season. For thickets, where deer like to bed, many sportsmen and sportswomen train their hunting dog companions to seek out and retrieve shed antlers. Where you find the sheds will offer evidence that a particular buck you have seen or captured on a trail camera during the previous season survived the year and possibly indicate his preferred areas for feeding and bedding. In addition, sheds can make great hunting camp and lodge decorations. Many times walking a place I find empty box turtle shells which one day I plan to use making slate calls for turkey hunting.
These are opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities year-round for yourself, family and friends. Getting children involved is especially rewarding by seeing their excitement and fascination with finding old buried treasures and wonders of nature.
Contact Sartain’s Heritage Properties and let us assist you in purchasing your own Recreational Property.