Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lab Days

Many thanks to Scott, Elsie, Carol, and Vicki for washing artifacts at Port Tobacco today. There are lots more and we will probably hold another lab day at Port Tobacco next Saturday.

Monday Pete will be running a lab day at the Maryland Historical Trust in Crownsville. If you would like to participate, it will run from 9 AM to 3 PM. The lab is in the basement of 100 Community Place in Crownsville. Make sure you have a photographic identification to show the security guard. If you have any difficulty, have the guard call Bruce Thompson. I'll stop by around noon.


Friday, July 17, 2009

Artifact of the Day

One of my favorite Port Tobacco artifacts is a small carved mammal bone dice that was uncovered in 2008 during the Centennial Hotel area excavations.

We haven't recovered many gaming artifacts at Port Tobacco. The only others that come to mind are the marbles that Magen began to analyze for us. We have many marbles from across the site and that date from the 19th and 20th centuries. More on those later.


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lab at Port Tobacco Saturday

Just a reminder to all that Scott will be running a public lab day at the Port Tobacco courthouse this Saturday. We have catalogued over Port Tobacco 75,000 artifacts over the last two years or so. We must clean the thousands of additional materials that we excavated this year before we can continue with cataloguing, and we can't begin our analyses and reporting until we have a complete inventory.

Please try to make the lab day this Saturday. Scott will entertain artifact washers with stories, poems, and a few songs.

Artifact of the Day

One of the activities that worked against the dental health of Port Tobaccoans was the smoking of tobacco. We have many recovered many tobacco pipes from across the site. Unfortunately most of our pipes do not contain maker's marks to help identify when and where they were made. We can still use the size of the hole through the pipe (the bore) to estimate the age of our pipes but this analysis has yet to be undertaken.

Below are some photos of our more diagnostic pipes. Katharine did some research on these and was able to identify a few. See her past post for preliminary results.

Lyon maker's mark.

Pipe stems with decoration.

Molded pipe bowl.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Artifact of the Day

Today's artifact of the day is unusual in that we have only one example of it (that I know of) from all our excavations at Port Tobacco. Given the number of residents and visitors passing through the town, one would imagine that many of these disposable objects would have been in use at any given time and many more would have found their way into the town's trash.

Today's artifact is a toothbrush carved out of mammal bone. The truth is that toothbrushes were not the popular item they are now back in "historic times". Entire families were known to have shared a toothbrush, if they even owned one. Even more "interesting" is that taverns may have one or two brushes for guests to use.

So in honor of today's artifact, give those pearly whites a little extra attention today.


Monday, July 13, 2009

Lab Schedule

We have worked out a schedule for lab days both in Port Tobacco and Crownsville.
Here it is:

Port Tobacco - Saturdays 9am - 3pm, starting 7/18/09

Crownsville - Mondays 8am - 3pm, starting on 7/20/09

If you have any questions or comments please let me know and we hope to see you there!

- Peter