Impressed into clay tobacco pipes are bits of data that have fueled endless research avenues since the earliest days of archaeology on historic sites excavated on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
There is no documentary support for that notion, but it is known that used pipes were placed in iron cradles and heat cleansed in bake ovens before being issued to the next round of smokers.
Few makers incorporated dates into their marks, though the practice of marking pipes probably initially coincided with the establishment of the London tobacco pipe guild in 1619 and continued into the 19th century (Nol Hume 2003-4).
Archaeologists analyze multiple clues to date and identify the pipe maker including a careful combination of archaeological site context, bowl style and form, pipe stem bore diameter, style and placement of the mark itself, and place of manufacture.
Archaeologist Al Luckenbach, director of Maryland's Lost Towns Project, shows the author pipes and equipment found on a 1660s pipe maker's kiln site in Anne Arundel County.
His is the most important contribution made to the history of colonial American pipe making. 1733) Throughout Virginia's colonial centuries, tobacco was the economic lifeblood of the Old Dominion, and unless one rolled it to smoke as a cigar, or took it as snuff, a pipe was as necessary to its consumption as fire.