Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Students learn life as 18th century child. Experimental Archaeology.

Students dressed in 18th century clothing making an apple Pomander Ball.

Human skull and skeleton dredged up from the depths of the Thames 'belonged to convict thrown overboard from 18th century prison ship'

Image copyright to Lara Maiklem.

A human skull and partial skeleton dredged up from the murky depths of the River Thames is thought to be a convict thrown overboard from an 18th century prison ship.
The remains are now to be studied by leading forensics experts in Australia in the hope of finding out why the person came to be buried in a shallow grave next to mudflats in the Thames Estuary.
They have been dated between 200 and 300 years old and were discovered in an area where prison hulks would moor before setting off for Australian penal colonies.

Monday, 2 December 2019

More Information On The Half Axe.

Half-Axe Information.
Basically the half axe was larger than a tomahawk but smaller than a felling axe.

camp axe: an axe with a lighter head (2 1/4 lb.) than a regular axe and a handle that measures around 19”. (also: half axe)

Then sometime around 1750 a new pattern began to
evolve from the boarding axes of the time that were heavier and
much more compact with a straighter, shorter, thicker spike and
a "half axe" style blade.


Names can confuse as well as clarify, and this is especially true
of the tomahawk. For years students and writers, archeolo-
gists and collectors have been accustomed to using names for
specific forms or general categories of hatchet or tomahawk. They
refer to squaw axes, half axes, or to French, Spanish, Minne-
wauken, Woodlands, or English types with the calm assumption
that these are accepted terms and will be understood.
A final general term occasionally encountered is the half axe or
half hatchet. This derived from the era when axe blades frequently
flared out symmetrically. In the half axe only the side toward the
hand flared out. The other side was straight or curved slightly in
the same direction. In the era considered here, the half axe was
the normal form for hatchets and felling axes, and the term itself
was becoming obsolete. 6
In early examples, spiked tomahawks were sometimes made with shanks for insertion into a wooden shaft in much the same manner as the usual halberd type. In such instances they were normally forged from one piece of iron or steel. One specimen found near Rome, New York, seems to have
been made by applying a small conical spike to a standard half axe.
Johnson, Reynaldo Address unknown. In 1808 he delivered 178 half axes at 500 each and 22 tomahawks at 400 each to the Office of IndianTrade. https://archive.org/stream/americanindianto01pete/americanindianto01pete_djvu.txt

My Log Cabin

Saturday, 30 November 2019

The Half-Axe.

I purchased my first hand forged tomahawk many years ago from a Blacksmith in Victoria. I realised after a while that the head on this tomahawk was simply too large for my needs, so I made a longer helve & turned it into a half-axe. I do not want to have to carry a saw, I do all my journeying on foot these days & carrying a saw is simply not practical. But when I have heavier cutting to do the half-axe is just the thing I need.
This image shows the half-axe secured under the blanket roll ties.