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Civil war opium bottle.

Kheidecker

Well-Known Member
Feb 15, 2020
127
28
Yeah I keep in touch with our local historical Society guy and donate a lot of it to him so he can be seen for decades. I buy a lot of stuff but then I also dug up a lot of stuff and digging up the stuff is by far much better. I think of the person that threw the object away over a hundred years ago. I find something cool man I'll be shaking.KEEP DIGGING
 

ROBBYBOBBY64

Well-Known Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,455
113
New Jersey
That's all good stuff. My issue is I don't get down south as much as I would like and then to get permission to dig an old camp site of a major battle is another story. Inks from the Battle of Fredericksburg and bottles from the Battle of Vicksburg. Confederate bullets from who knows where. I like knowing where the relic was discovered. Nothing better than digging old stuff up and being the first to touch that item in over 100-150 years. What a rush!
ROBBYBOBBY64.
 

American

Well-Known Member
Nov 17, 2017
56
8
Just curious-what makes this an opium bottle rather than a general purpose medicine that could have had any number of nostrums in it? I'd also date this a decade or more before the Civil War honestly.
That bottle definitely predates the Civil War, as far as when it was blown. It could have still been in service during the Civil War.
 

Bohdan

Active Member
Jan 14, 2019
39
8
Slocan Valley, BC
Keep in mind that opium is a thick tar-like substance. In the 19thC. it was generally supplied in 'cakes' wrapped in paper in metal tins. Perhaps a 'tincture' of opium? But a beautiful bottle.
 

willong

Well-Known Member
Apr 22, 2009
195
28
Port Angeles, WA
Keep in mind that opium is a thick tar-like substance. In the 19thC. it was generally supplied in 'cakes' wrapped in paper in metal tins. Perhaps a 'tincture' of opium? But a beautiful bottle.
Good point on the packaging of opium. Up here in the PNW, bottle collectors typically called any small glass vial an opium bottle if it was dug in an aera formerly hosting a Chinese population. The practice persisted despite knowledgeable people making the same point. "Opium bottle' just sounds so much more exotic than "small pill vial."

Tincture of opium, otherwise known as laudanum. Celia Ann "Mattie" Blaylock had the habit, as portrayed in the movie "Tombstone." Several years after the notorious affairs at Tombstone and her parting with Wyatt Earp, Mattie ended her life in Pinal, another Arizona mining camp, with a final dose.
 

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