Dating old clay pipes

Over the next thousand or so years, the bowls of these pipes became more sculptural, frequently carved into the forms of ducks, wolves, and other animals.

Land drainage has a long history in Britain, going back to the Roman cutting of the Car Dykes in the Fens and the ditches of Romney Marsh.

Lewis Binford later modified and improved Harrington’s method using a statistical formula (Cambridge Archaeology Field Group 2012).

Early statistician Gregory King estimated the population of England and Wales at 5 1/2 million in 1700.By the first Census in 1801 it was 9,000,000 and by 1851 almost 18,000,000.The first people to smoke tobacco in pipes were the Native Americans who lived in the eastern woodlands of North America between 500 BCE and 500 CE.These early smokers burned indigenous tobacco in clay or stone platform pipes, so named for their flat bases.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.

One method was to cut a small, rectangular channel at the base of the trench, and put a roofing tile over it.

This is probably due to the fact that stems were fairly long and easily broken . The larger bores being older and the smallest being more recent.

There are currently three ways to date a pipe with varying accuracy: bore width, bowl form and maker’s marks. Although Harrington doubted the accuracy of his methods, they have proven fairly accurate with large sample sizes (Hume 1969).

A pipe can be divided into two main parts, the bowl and the stem. The bowl can be intricately molded with designs or maker’s marks or left bare.

Some pipes were formed with heel or spur underneath the bowl.

A large bore pipe -- first of 2 in., later of 3 in.