New site on 1873 map but found 1900-1930 bottles

Welcome to our Antique Bottle community

Be a part of something great, join today!

scubabottler

Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2023
Messages
14
Reaction score
20
Points
3
I'm a novice looking for some insight from those more experienced than myself regarding a new site I searched for bottles. I found it on a 1873 map in upstate NY, it is now state forest. Nothing remains of a homesite, no foundation. I did find a narrow well that was improved. Nearby, at the edge of a ravine about 15' high I found some broken glass. I started removing the surface leaves and found what I think was the remains of a box spring ....just really rusty coils. Under the coil area I found a ton of glass! Later I wondered why my finds were mostly late teens thru early 1930s considering the age of the site. All this glass was found within the 1st 4" or so in an area 2ft x 6ft, after that it seemed to turn to clay, tough to dig and the glass stopped. Couldn't find any other dump areas and so my question is, do you think I should go back and dig deeper? Other wierd thing about my finds were bottles were 90% medicine type bottles, no sodas, beers or alcohol. Thought that was wierd. Iron found suggests a wooden gate was nearby. This seemed more like a dump because it had battery parts, a horseshoe etc... I walked the ravine, nothing. Is it possible I just didn't dig deep enough?
 

Attachments

  • 20230929_131225.jpg
    20230929_131225.jpg
    610 KB · Views: 290
  • 20230929_131227.jpg
    20230929_131227.jpg
    566.7 KB · Views: 278
  • 20230929_131230.jpg
    20230929_131230.jpg
    709.8 KB · Views: 246
  • 20230929_131235.jpg
    20230929_131235.jpg
    639.7 KB · Views: 279

hemihampton

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2006
Messages
9,229
Reaction score
6,284
Points
113
if you found a well a house should of been near by. if so a Privy should be nearby but in 1873 I'm not sure if they learned yet that the privy should NOT be near the well. A visible depression & probe may help you find a privy. Bottom of well could have bottles, I found 2 cobalt blue Hutch Bottles & others at bottom of 15 foot well before. I don't think anything is deeper in ravine if your hitting clay. search farther around outer edges of property or wood line for an additional dump. Good Luck. Leon.

P1000080.JPG
 

Plumbata

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2007
Messages
2,732
Reaction score
47
Points
48
Location
Peoria Co.
My impression is that it was an isolated load of trash, I don't really see ashes so maybe it was a cleanout near the end of the period the house was inhabited. From the sounds of it the primary dump is probably somewhere else. They may have been more fastidious than normal and buried their trash instead of chucking it in the ravine, or maybe they dumped it further away beyond the extent you walked, or maybe there was a hollow/depression they used and filled up which wouldn't be as obvious as a ravine dump. Check the start/head of the ravine if it's reasonably nearby, many times dumps would be located at the beginning of a ravine and they would fill it until level with the surrounding land and keep working their way down. It kept things more tidy and contained and was easier to "cap" with soil to cover the mess.
 

CanadianBottles

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 24, 2014
Messages
4,810
Reaction score
2,512
Points
113
It can be tough to find large amounts of 19th century bottles on 19th century farms because people living in fairly remote areas often just didn't buy that much stuff prior to the 20th century. Your experience is pretty typical for what I see in my area too, the 1870s and older farms will have extensive mid-20th century dumps and not much visible from before that. There's a decent chance that there are older trash pits around too but in mostly flat areas like mine it's no easy task finding them.

As for why it's all medicine bottles, the lack of beverage bottles isn't that surprising. A decent number of people just don't drink alcohol or soda, and in those days if they did drink soda from time to time they would have had a strong incentive to return the bottles because the deposits were much higher when adjusting for inflation. In my experience sodas and milks are much more likely to show up intact from town dumps, my guess is that it was hotel and restaurant staff who had no incentive to care where the bottles went, and bottlers throwing out their competitors' bottles. The lack of jars and household product bottles is odd though, usually that type is the most common for 1930s-60s farm dumps.
 

scubabottler

Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2023
Messages
14
Reaction score
20
Points
3
My impression is that it was an isolated load of trash, I don't really see ashes so maybe it was a cleanout near the end of the period the house was inhabited. From the sounds of it the primary dump is probably somewhere else. They may have been more fastidious than normal and buried their trash instead of chucking it in the ravine, or maybe they dumped it further away beyond the extent you walked, or maybe there was a hollow/depression they used and filled up which wouldn't be as obvious as a ravine dump. Check the start/head of the ravine if it's reasonably nearby, many times dumps would be located at the beginning of a ravine and they would fill it until level with the surrounding land and keep working their way down. It kept things more tidy and contained and was easier to "cap" with soil to cover the mess.
Thank you for that advice, I will try going back there this weekend and look a little closer and bring a metal detector too
 

scubabottler

Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2023
Messages
14
Reaction score
20
Points
3
It can be tough to find large amounts of 19th century bottles on 19th century farms because people living in fairly remote areas often just didn't buy that much stuff prior to the 20th century. Your experience is pretty typical for what I see in my area too, the 1870s and older farms will have extensive mid-20th century dumps and not much visible from before that. There's a decent chance that there are older trash pits around too but in mostly flat areas like mine it's no easy task finding them.

As for why it's all medicine bottles, the lack of beverage bottles isn't that surprising. A decent number of people just don't drink alcohol or soda, and in those days if they did drink soda from time to time they would have had a strong incentive to return the bottles because the deposits were much higher when adjusting for inflation. In my experience sodas and milks are much more likely to show up intact from town dumps, my guess is that it was hotel and restaurant staff who had no incentive to care where the bottles went, and bottlers throwing out their competitors' bottles. The lack of jars and household product bottles is odd though, usually that type is the most common for 1930s-60s farm dumps.
Very interesting. I will need to spend a lot more time looking around and digging test holes. Thanks for your input!
 

scubabottler

Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2023
Messages
14
Reaction score
20
Points
3
I think I figured it out... couldn't find a foundation or anything like that, did find/follow small metal fence that could have been used for small farm animals. The surface dump was near the "well" which I now think was just an outhouse hole. It was stone lined but o ly about 18" diameter x 4' deep. I could push probe and shovel down about a foot and turn over dirt, don't think there's any trash/glass in there. Makes sense now, outhouse near the trash both in a corner section near ravine. Expanded my surface exploration and found a few more bottles, all 1920s-30 except one bottle which, based upon base markings, is probably 1895ish. So that site is "done". Metal detected a bit, little buckle and crazy bent horseshoe....will see if it matches the other horseshoe I pulled from the dump. Overall nice little haul!
 

Attachments

  • 20231008_090048.jpg
    20231008_090048.jpg
    410.8 KB · Views: 120
  • 20231008_155118.jpg
    20231008_155118.jpg
    166.3 KB · Views: 118

TexasRancher

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2023
Messages
57
Reaction score
26
Points
18
if you found a well a house should of been near by. if so a Privy should be nearby but in 1873 I'm not sure if they learned yet that the privy should NOT be near the well. A visible depression & probe may help you find a privy. Bottom of well could have bottles, I found 2 cobalt blue Hutch Bottles & others at bottom of 15 foot well before. I don't think anything is deeper in ravine if your hitting clay. search farther around outer edges of property or wood line for an additional dump. Good Luck. Leon.

View attachment 249996
Wondering if you can post pictures of those blue cobalt hutch bottles...where are they from...embossed? Tha tis an amazing bottle you have in your hands...show and tell us more.
 

TexasRancher

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2023
Messages
57
Reaction score
26
Points
18
I'm a novice looking for some insight from those more experienced than myself regarding a new site I searched for bottles. I found it on a 1873 map in upstate NY, it is now state forest. Nothing remains of a homesite, no foundation. I did find a narrow well that was improved. Nearby, at the edge of a ravine about 15' high I found some broken glass. I started removing the surface leaves and found what I think was the remains of a box spring ....just really rusty coils. Under the coil area I found a ton of glass! Later I wondered why my finds were mostly late teens thru early 1930s considering the age of the site. All this glass was found within the 1st 4" or so in an area 2ft x 6ft, after that it seemed to turn to clay, tough to dig and the glass stopped. Couldn't find any other dump areas and so my question is, do you think I should go back and dig deeper? Other wierd thing about my finds were bottles were 90% medicine type bottles, no sodas, beers or alcohol. Thought that was wierd. Iron found suggests a wooden gate was nearby. This seemed more like a dump because it had battery parts, a horseshoe etc... I walked the ravine, nothing. Is it possible I just didn't dig deep enough?
Where in upstate N.Y. are you? Near Watertown or Mannsville N.Y.? I know of some sites near there early 1800's.
 

hemihampton

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2006
Messages
9,229
Reaction score
6,284
Points
113
Wondering if you can post pictures of those blue cobalt hutch bottles...where are they from...embossed? Tha tis an amazing bottle you have in your hands...show and tell us more.

Here's a link to the story here. The Wishing well. Leon.


p.s. If you like cobalt blue hutch's heres some.

grouppic300.JPG
cleanedgroupleft.JPG
Leoninbluehutchhole.jpg
BlueHutchCabnitCloseUp.JPG
 

Members online

Latest threads

Forum statistics

Threads
83,670
Messages
745,519
Members
24,772
Latest member
oldschool1967
Top