via press release:
SPIKE TV HUNTS FOR BURIED HISTORICAL TREASURES IN NEW ORIGINAL SERIES "AMERICAN DIGGER"
Unscripted Series Travels Around The Country Uncovering Hidden Treasure Found In The Backyards Of Everyday Americans
Series Following Former Professional Wrestler, Ric Savage And His Team Of Relic Hunters Premieres Tuesday, March 20 at 10:00 PM, ET/PT
New York, NY, February 15, 2012 - Spike TV ventures around the country in search of historical treasure buried in the backyards of unsuspecting citizens in the new unscripted original series, "American Digger." Premiering Tuesday, March 20 at 10:00 PM, ET/PT, "American Digger" follows the American Savage team, led by former professional wrestler-turned-modern- day relic hunter Ric Savage as they scour target-rich areas, such as battlefields and historic sites, in hopes of striking it rich by unearthing and selling rare pieces of American history.
In the US, there are millions of historical relics buried in backyards just waiting to be discovered and turned into profit. "American Digger" hopes to claim a piece of that pie as the series travels to a different city each week, including Detroit, MI, Brooklyn, NY, Chicago, IL and Jamestown, VA searching for high-value artifacts and relics, some of which have been untouched for centuries. After pinpointing historical locations such as Civil War and Revolutionary War battlefields, Savage's first task is to convince reluctant homeowners to let his team dig up their property using state-of-the-art metal detectors and heavy-duty excavation equipment. The team will then sell any artifacts found for a substantial profit by consulting experts and scouring the antique and collectible markets, but not before negotiating a deal to divide the revenue with the property owners.
Throughout the series, items with great historical and cultural significance will be found, including a late 17th century British Carronade naval cannon, a 5 million year old Megalodon shark's tooth and a 19th century Kentucky long rifle.
American Savage, based in Mechanicsville, VA, is the top artifact recovery company in the country, digging as much as half a million dollars worth of historical artifacts out of US soil each year. The team is comprised of recovery expert Rue Shumate, battlefield historian Bob Buttafuso, Savage's wife Rita who manages the business and their 25-year old son Giuseppe, who provides tech support and is the "muscle" of the operation.
Born and raised in western North Carolina, Savage is a former professional wrestler turned artifact recovery expert, hunting relics from America's past with the help of his all-star team, American Savage. "Heavy Metal" Ric Savage had a prolific seven year career in the sport, competing in nearly every wrestling organization, among them the WCW (World Championship Wrestling), the ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling) and the NWA (National Wrestling Alliance). Following his retirement from professional wrestling in 1997, Savage returned to his other passion, the Civil War era, by getting his start in relic hunting. His first major find, a hunk of shrapnel he found at the site of the Battle of Cold Harbor, VA, prompted him to form American Savage and continue his pursuit of history and riches. Since its inception, American Savage has recovered a wide range of valuable items, including hundreds of Civil War bullets, dozens of Civil War artillery shell fragments, multiple Native American arrow and axe heads, a set of prehistoric shark teeth and a Civil War era beer bottle.
"American Digger" is a 13 half-hour episode series created and produced by Gurney Productions ("Auction Hunters"), owned by Scott and Deirdre Gurney. Sharon Levy is Spike TV's Executive Vice President, Original Series, Tim Duffy is Senior Vice President of Original Series for Spike TV and Justin Lacob is Director, Original Series.