As a native Rhode Islander, I was excited to see a recent article in the Providence Journal about a metal detectorist who had recovered some early Islamic pieces, which he was able to link to Pirates and the slave trade in Newport.
When I was in elementary school, our teacher brought in an amateur archeologist who told us about his best finds and showed us lots of examples of the treasures he had recovered. I remember being fascinated by the Fugio Cent he passed around. Later that afternoon, he detected our school recess yard, and pulled up lots of loose change, a handful of Buffalo nickels and some Wheat Cents, and several silver spoons!
I have had several metal detectors throughout my life, but I have never gotten into it the way I know many people have. The only piece of note I was ever able to find was a corroded, scratched, dateless Draped Bust large cent, and I paid for it a terrible case of poison ivy afterwards! However, living in New England, I have had conversations with many detectorists who have made very exciting finds, ranging from early colonial U.S. coins to the Spanish pieces of eight and other European coins which circulated before the establishment of the United States.