By Jodi Marze, Lifestyles Editor
The Picayune Item
Fatty’s Seafood establishment was filled to capacity Monday night for the Premier Party for truTV’s “Swamp Hunters.”
The show, which airs Mondays at 9:30 p.m. on truTV, features a Carriere family who have had to make some hard choices and restructure their lives to navigate this current economy. But, as people will come to see, they have done so as a family.
“Swamp Hunters” star Dustin Taylor gives the background on the show its cast and the show.
“My dad and I have been hunting relics for over 25 years. It started as a hobby, but with the economy down we are using this as a means to provide for the family. For years we have done construction work, all of us come from a bricklayer and stucco mason background. With the economy down and no building going on, we turned to what we know best — the swamps.
Dad knows the swamps like most people know their living rooms. D' Roy (my dad) is what I call the ‘John Wayne of the swamp.’ He is the old fashioned hardcore traditional father who keeps us boys straight, even though we are all grown men.
“Allen, is my younger brother and is learning the business and process. Although Allen has done some of the relic hunting in the past, he is just now learning what D'Roy and I have been doing for years.
“James is the navigator of the group. He matches up old historical maps with today's maps and technology.
“Bobo Taylor and Kacey Taylor are my cousins. They know little about the relic hunting, but are strong as two NFL football players,” Taylor said.
There is more time and research that goes into the process of relic hunting than can be portrayed in 30 minutes on television.
“We have a method; relic hunting is not Easter egg hunt. We don't just go into peoples backyards and start digging. It’s a process.
“D'Roy will sit with the old timers and hear stories from yester-year. After he hears a legend, he will bring it back to me. I either go to libraries or museums and research to find out how much of the story is traceable. I have to sift through what is real and what is not real. By searching land deeds, family trees and other public documents, I can trace down who has owned the land and how it was passed down from generation to generation. I find out what is true about the tale.
“Only when we are satisfied that the story is valid, will we go and do a search. At the same time, we get to save a piece of history. We are not looters, we are protectors of each other and our rich history.”
Allen Taylor says, “This is a lot tougher than people would think. It is hard work, but we always pull together and make it work.”
“The bottom line, about us and our show, is that our family works together; we have each others back. Like most people around these parts we look out for each other and help one another. If I have something, we all have something. We are using this to provide, not make money. Money is necessary to survive, but the togetherness and helping each other is what we are most about,” says Dustin Taylor.
”The thing I hope people get from the show is: Yes, we fight and fuss— but we laugh too. We are family, no matter what we do we do together. It is not all sunshine and rainbows; sometimes it’s mud and swamp; but there is treasure anywhere if you just look.”