The Most Valuable Treasures Ever Found With a Metal Detector

Plunk a person into the middle of nowhere armed with a metal detector and you’ll be amazed at what they unearth. Here are the million-dollar discoveries some of them have made.

The Boot of Cortez

Image: Heritage Auction

The famous Boot of Cortez is one the most significant metal detector finds in recent history. This breathtaking gold nugget was discovered by a local prospector in the Sonoran Desert in 1989.

With a weight of 12.38 kilograms (437 ounces), the Boot of Cortez holds the record for the largest surviving gold nugget found in the Western Hemisphere. Named after the footwear of Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés, the nugget was sold at auction in 2008 for $1.6 million (US).

Source: The Most Valuable Metal Detector Finds Ever