Then word got out (Front page news on the NY Times & Daily News) and locals and Bennys alike came out to search for more gold. Rumor has it that there were 5000 people at a time that would show up and search along the coast.
Locals started renting shovels, selling buckets, picks, etc. The local restaurants couldn’t keep up with the demand.
What if that happened today? Would Highlands see the same insurgence of treasure seekers? Would the locals put up with it? Highlands seems to not particularly tolerate outsiders.
There is a bumper sticker somewhere that says “Highlands, NJ – not the Hamptons & Don’t want to be”
I suspect that if any local clammer or lobersterman found coins today it would be a well kept secret.