Buried Treasure

I’ve been active for about two years in the hobby of metal detecting. Recently, I had a find that made a great change in the way I look at “treasure.”

A very good friend had recently purchased an older home in Rock Hill, dating back to the 1930s. On my second hunt of the property, I got a “hit” in an area I had been over at least twice before. As I probed the ground, I felt a hard object less than 2 inches down. I pushed the probe sideways, and out rolled a large, heavy gold ring. A little cleaning revealed a 1958 Clemson A&M class ring. A little more cleaning revealed an engraving on the inside: T.J. Bethea, Rock Hill, SC.

By searching the Clemson Alumni Directory, I discovered on listing for the Bethea in 1958. A little further research revealed a Bethea still living in South Carolina. A match?

One evening, I decided to make that call. A gentleman answered the phone, and I made an introduction. “I believe I have something that belongs to you.”

After a few questions and answers, he suddenly responded, “YOU DIDN’T FIND MY CLEMSON RING, DID YOU?”

I’ve never experienced such satisfaction in my entire life. This Tiger was going home.

-Rick Baker

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