I’ve been thinking this last week about the importance of learning how to discover lost and forgotten sites from the historical past. In fact, I have recently received quite a few requests for how to overlay various historical maps, one on top of the other, in a way to be able to clearly combine the information.
When I was a young and active metal detectorist, being able to find old sites was especially important because it allowed me to increase the age and value of my discoveries. It also helped to reduce wasted time digging trash.
As I grew older and began to search for lost cities in Central and South America, I had to develop some much stronger research skills. That was still before the days of Google Earth. I eventually developed a formula that allowed me to discover dozens of truly “lost cities” that once supported thousands of people many hundreds or thousands of years ago.
And then came Google Earth… WOW!
Google Earth changed everything for me. All of a sudden, I could go exploring from the convenience of my home office. I could zoom in anddetect historical anomalies from space.
First, you can start off by reading a little about the history of your home or target area.
Next, you can acquire a few historical maps of your target area. The more diverse the time period of the historical maps, the better may be your results.
You can scan and digitize these maps if they are paper. Finding the maps already in a digital format is much easier.
Now, you can overlay and geo-orient the historical maps on Google Earth. You can play with the transparency settings so that you are able to see a clear combination of several maps on Google Earth.
An alternative to this would be to do the work in Photoshop (or similar software) and assign each map to its own layer. Then you can manipulate the transparencies of the layers in order to see things in the best possible way.
Once you have all of your layered maps geo-oriented with Google Earth, you can then begin to zoom in to your target areas and look for anyhistorical site anomalies. Then you can capture the exact coordinates of your anomalies and use a GPS to locate the sites in real-time with your boots on the ground.
I have done this hundreds of times over the last few years. It works perfectly almost every time. Just think of the implications for detectorists, explorers and plain curious people. There are literally millions of lost and forgotten sites out there. Many of them hold a lot of treasure in many forms.
There are more than a dozen ways to monetize your efforts and discoveries. I’ll write about a few of these methods in my next newsletter. Some of my methods have nothing to do with digging at all. Please stay tuned for that profitable information…
Stockton Dan's "Secret Method" video
Finally, a long-time friend came to visit Ecuador a few years ago. He was in the process of becoming a major expert in discovering lost cities. He shared an incredibly valuable post on one of my forums. In his post, he revealed his own SIX Methods for finding lost cities anywhere on the planet.
I have now created a new web page with his comments and also with the responding comments from some of my subscribers. This may now be the most information-packed article I have ever shared!
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Here is a great post by a good friend of mine who has become an expert in discovering Lost Cities around the world... Stan
by Rob (Island of Malta)
Hi Guys, I was just wondering if anyone had any ideas on exactly how to follow leads to lost cities or settlements. I thought we could brainstorm some ideas.
I've written a book about the subject, and am in the process of writing yet another one.
For now, I was wondering if anyone would be interested in commenting about the different research methodologies used in actually locating sites. We all know that research is the cornerstone of what we do, whether it's finding lost treasure, lost cities, or simply looking for gold nuggets or alluvial deposits.
Personally, I think it's best to start with the more common sources:
1. Indigenous/Local knowledge (this is a branch of ethno-archaeology which uses contemporary native beliefs and practices to infer information about ancient beliefs and practices)
2. Satellite imagery (available freely on the internet)
3. Ancient descriptions (contemporary descriptions of travels or pilgrimages, or exploration, ect.)
4. Geography (where would it most make sense to found or establish a settlement or city form the standpoint of taking advantage of natural resources such as rivers, waterways, edible trees, mineral deposits, etc?)
5. Archaeological reports from previous sites which could lead to the discovery of new sites.
6. Ancient migratory patterns, tribal routes, roads, pilgrimage routes, etc (any patterns of the mass movement of people regularly used)
These are just six of my ideas, if anyone has any other ideas, please feel free to comment. You're also more than welcome to visit my site and see what I've got up there. Articles are still going up. I also highly recommend Stan's original 'Wealth Through Adventure Course', which was a great inspiration to me in my work. Not sure if it's still available, but it should be, for pure ideas on lifestyle transformation. I knew about the subjects he had written about, but had never thought to actually put them into practice as part of making a living.
The fossil section is just one example of this. His Discover Anything course may at first glance seem unrelated to such a discipline as treasure hunting. However, upon further consideration, research largely consists of following up leads.
For example, you see a newspaper clipping of someone who has recently found an old gold coin in the area. It doesn't say where it was found or give details of the discoverer. Using the proper research tools and methods from this particular series, one would be theoretically able to track down the individual, question them, and go back over the area where the coin was found.
Where there's one coin, there may be many... this is the idea which lies behind the concept of a treasure cache. The questioning format which is given in the series can also be used in one's questioning of locals in an area (in case of indigenous tribesmen who speak no English, use a translator or guide).
Research really is the cornerstone of what we do folks, and it's important to develop solid methodologies on which to base treasure leads or site research if we hope to be successful. Until we do that, we're just shooting in the dark. I know, I used to be an archaeologist and we had to do this stuff all the time. It's almost like detective work. So let's try and put our heads together to figure out the general principles of treasure hunting and get more specific from there.
Stan's comments: What a great topic to discuss! I can't wait to see what everyone has to say about this. Rob's 6 sources are right on the mark. I look forward to making comments in this thread as well. Lost cities can still be found on every continent in the world, even close to big cities! Let this interesting discussion begin...
Comments for How to Find Lost Cities?
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