Sunday, July 04, 2010

Urban Archaeology

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Here are some of the most interesting items that I've excavated from our garden. Judging by the structure of the teeth, the skull on the left is some kind rodent, and the one on the right is from a young raccoon.

The bottle on the left is embossed with the words, "Larkin Co. Buffalo." Neither Robb nor I can imagine what might have been sold in the tiny bottle that has the ceramic marble balanced on top.

I particularly like the little toy horse, because it reminds me of the terra cotta figures from Chinese tombs.

I'm curious what those of you who have gardens have dug up over the years. I know my sister dug up teeth and a token for a peep-show booth in her garden in Brooklyn. Christine, of Idora Design found a beautiful 1901 dime. What have you unearthed?

12 comments:

Kay/The Little Foxes said...

I asked my husband, who's 4th generation on this property what they have found. Arrowheads galore, a spearhead and pottery pieces - all from an ancient Cherokee village that was (we understand) in this valley at one time. My FIL found an arrowhead piece last year. They've also found a 6 ft piece of a log chain (now he's joking saying it might have been a ships anchor chain, haha). Whiskey bottles (oops, clarification - they were hidden obscure corners in the barns, not buried in the garden :-)).
Growing up in KY, I remember finding ceramic pieces (glazed with designs) and blue glass from milk of magnesia bottles ;-)).

Christine said...

Duuuude, your treasures are waaay better than a measly dime! I'm incredibly jealous of the horse and the skull. I'm waiting for the moment when I go completely nuts and buy a metal detector (which might be a good idea since I'm constantly losing my Felcos in the mulch!).

Donna said...

Unfortunately my garden yields only rocks. My husband loves using his metal detector though, and has found some very cool things in a variety of locations. (I appropriated the teeny metal buddha.) We have also been known to go through the backyard trash 'dumps' of old abandoned farmhouses, which yield lots of old bottles and pottery. How gross is that? LOL

. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

Nothing gross about going through old rural dumps! Robb and I have done that, plenty of times.

ellen said...

Your haul is much better than mine. All I ever dug up was gobs of ugly lava rock from the 70's and big chunks of avocado green shag carpet.

. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

Yeah, well, I didn't take any photos of the glass and rusty nails.

I'll be picking shards of blue tarp out of the garden for the rest of my life!

Grumpy Grinch said...

Larkin Company of Buffalo, NY was in business from the 1880s to 1940s--sold soap and scents--I have not seen the bottle before. Any words on the tiny bottle with the ceramic ball?

Grumpy

Grumpy Grinch said...

Check this out:

http://www.bottlebooks.com/larkin.htm

alittlebitofeach said...

I found a 1801 penny laying in our driveway, and we find bottles and bits of china all the time. Digging out for a patio with a rented back-ho my dad unearthed a perfect blue bottle. We can't imagine how it wasn't crushed in the process.

Gothknits said...

Our neighbor found an old horse shoe between our yards. I believe this area had a stable at one point. There are several working farms in the neighborhood and our section was built up as post-war housing. All I've managed to find are a lot of large rocks...including the ridge line we are built on.

Anonymous said...

The land that my house is on used to be my grandfather's dump. When they worked on our septic system, the guys found old bottles (some a beautiful royal blue!). From what I hear, there are things under my grass that I don't even want to know about...... I just might get arrested ;-) (according to my dad.....)

MW

ts46064 said...

The Larkin bottle probably contained soap. The Larkin Companies administration building was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright but was sadly torn down in 1950 to build of all things a truck stop, that never materialized and the site been a parking lot for 60 yeas.
More info:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larkin_Administration_Building

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