Your Name On It Nuggets

By Albert Miles

I first started swinging a detector around the Western Australian goldfields about 1978 and since then I’ve generally managed to escape to them once or twice a year though sometimes, unfortunately, it was a few years between trips. Prospecting and camping out is always more enjoyable if shared with a few like-minded mates and I’ve been fortunate enough to have done this on all of my visits to the diggings. Looking back over the years I can recall at least half a dozen instances where either me or a mate unearthed a reasonable nugget that simply ‘Had Your Name On It’.

The first ‘Name On It Nugget’ was in 1980 when me and my brother-in-law, Ian, and a few other relatives journeyed from Kalgoorlie to north of Laverton and camped near a patch of old dry blowings south of the Famous Blue. Next morning, full of enthusiasm, we were into it bright and early with me scouting around the edge of the dry blowings and Ian going over the top of them. He’d only checked about a dozen of the low dumps when he called out ‘I think I’ve got one’ as he dug out the top of the dump.

After more scratching about he excitedly held up a long, narrow nugget weighing in at 1.5 ounces. About 80 years before, the narrow shape of the slug must have allowed it to pass through the sieve, bounce over the riffles of the old prospector’s dry blower and, with all the dust blowing about, fall unnoticed onto the top of the dump where it had remained, waiting for Ian.

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