Broke and poor, one man found the "Hand of Faith" - the largest gold nugget found by a metal detector

Anita Durairaj
The Hand of Faith gold nuggetPhoto byFF23-fr; CC-BY-3.0

The "Hand of Faith" gold nugget is reported to be the biggest gold nugget in existence and the second-biggest ever discovered.

It is also the biggest gold nugget that has ever been found by a hand-held metal detector.

The story of the discovery of the "Hand of Faith" nugget begins in Australia with the Hillier family.

In 1978, Kevin Hillier, his wife Bev, and their four young children left Western Australia and decided to travel the country on a bus.

Kevin made ends meet by working odd jobs but the family struggled financially. Then, Kevin suffered from a back injury and doctors instructed that he take it easy and start walking to aid in his recovery.

The family was broke but they decided to settle down in a gold-rush town called Kingower. Kevin and his wife already had dreams that they would discover gold and strike it rich. The family prayed that they would find gold.

To heal his back injury, Kevin started walking with a metal detector in the "gold fields" of Australia. On September 1980, his luck changed.

Kevin had found a gold nugget resting 12 inches below the surface and positioned vertically.

The nugget was huge and weighed almost 60 pounds. For the Hillier family, the rock looked like a hand making a blessing so they nicknamed it "Hand of Faith."

Eventually, the family contacted the government about the nugget. There was a press conference but the Hilliers stayed hidden away from the limelight.

In 1981, the nugget was sold to the Golden Nugget Casino chain in the US. The nugget sold for over a million dollars.

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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