Monday, December 13, 2010

400 Year old Artifacts Revealing Jamestown's Past

Pipes found at Jamestown.
Jamestown pipes sit atop fragments of a sagger, a small, clay, pipemaking oven (file photo).
Photograph courtesy Michael Lavin, Jamestown Rediscovery
Paula Neely in Jamestown, Virginia
Published November 29, 2010
Bearing perhaps the earliest printing in English America, fragments of 400-year-old personalized pipes have been found at Virginia's Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in the New World, archaeologists say.
Stamped with the names of Sir Walter Raleigh and other eminent men back in England, the pipes may have been intended to impress investors—underscoring Jamestown's fundamentally commercial nature.
"Finding these pipes has illuminated the complex political and social network in London that was behind the settlement," said William Kelso, director of archaeology for Historic Jamestowne, a public-private partnership that works to preserve and interpret the settlement site. (See a Jamestown map.)
The personalized clay pipes, which archaeologists say were probably made between 1608 and 1610, also provide new insights into Jamestown's early pipemaking industry.

A detail of a personalized Jamestown pipe.
Detail of a personalized-pipe found at Jamestown.
Photograph courtesy Michael Lavin, Jamestown Rediscovery


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