Friday, March 30, 2012

Lead Shot Production Research

Hello Fort St. Joseph World!

I would like to tell you all about the research I have been doing since the close of the field season. While taking the Early Technologies class with Dr. Nassaney, I, along with the other students, was assigned to research an early technology. For many reasons, I choose to do research on lead shot specifically from Fort St. Joseph. I used the lead shot found at the fort site to learn about production methods and if the shot had been produced on site or brought in through trade. The lead shot was weighed and then examined in detail to see if there was any marking to show how the shot was produced. I found that the shot was being produced in two main sizes, but still held a great amount of variation which led me to the conclusion that there were multiple producers. This in turn showed me that it was most likely produced on site. Also, the markings on the lead shot shows us that over 86% of the shot found on site is Rupert method shot, which is produced by pouring lead through a strainer and letting it drop a short distance into water. This is a very easy way to produce lead shot, which also helps to prove that people living at the Fort were likely producing the shot on site. To better illustrate and explain my findings, I put them into a poster, which I have posted to the blog for your benefit.

I hope this has shed some light on what we do here at Western when we aren’t in the field!

-Amanda Messer