Dating old clay pipes cute headlines for dating sites

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Sir Walter Raleigh introduced tobacco into Britain at the end of the 16th Century and its popularity grew quickly.There were no cigarettes in those days and most people used clay pipes.Care should be taken that it doesn't poke a hole anywhere else in the stem.The straw or stick is then moved back and forth gently from both ends until it slides out easily.Because most historical archaeologists can locate a copy of Nol Humes Guide to Artifacts of Colonial America (192, figure 97) within arms reach, this is the most frequently used though admittedly simplified bowl typology.

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Towards the end of the eighteenth century a few landowners began to employ a more effective type of although drainage, using tiles or drain bricks to replace the faggots and stones.

For this cataloguing system, we suggest using Oswalds (19-42, figure 3G and 4G) Simplified General Typology for attempting to type pipe bowls that are complete enough to match the forms he provides.

While we recommend this reference as the most comprehensive, some archaeologists (including the DAACS initiative) prefer Atkinson and Oswalds (1969:7-12, figure 1 and figure 2) London-derived typology for its detailed approach to 17th-century pipes.

But just as few of us give much thought to what later generations might deduce from our discarded bottle caps, no one in the eighteenth century considered how a twenty-first-century archaeologist might use his broken pipe as a clue to his life and time. The characteristics of tobacco pipes changed with the years, and if an archaeologist can date those changes, so can he date the objects with which they are are found.

There are thousands of pipe fragments found in Williamsburg.

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