General discussion > Antique Accoutrements

Bone Tipped Powder Horns

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Tim Crosby:
 Based on the shape of the tip and the Butt, it looks like it has a slight flare to me and the fact that it starts out relatively flat, the Three lines, then goes into a bee Hive shape, I am going to say Southwestern Virginia. I don't think Cherry butts were uncommon from the Upper valley down through that area. I take it that is a screw in the butt? Wondering if that is a replacement or original equipment, would be interesting to see if it is hand made or machine made, just to put an about date on it.  M2CW

  Tim

Tim Crosby:
 Shelby, I hope you don't mind but I sent a link to Jay Hopkins, posted with his permission is his reply to me:

 "The short answer is that it could have come from a group of southern states- VA, WVA, NC, TE or KY. What you do know is that it did not come from Indiana, Ohio or PA. This is why you would love to know a bit more from the consigner to the Indiana auction. Let's go through what we do know. Horns with pinned "bone" (really antler) are found from all five of the above listed states. The tip configuration is more that of VA (so that could include WVA, TE, or KY) but make NC far less likely. On the other hand, the butt with the stepped tier (beehive) configuration suggests western NC, but the straight sides at the base would suggest Tenn. One would like to know the butt diameter and more about the carrying device. It appears to be a screw which would most likely be a replacement (period?) I don't know if it is possible to know what was there originally. If the butt diameter is in the vicinity of 3" that would suggest VA and fit into my category of large rifleman horns. This would also include WVA and KY where such horns were also found. I have, to date, not been able to make much out of wood types as I have seen cherry butts from all five of the above states. I think KY is a good possibility and if there had been a history of the family coming to Indiana from KY, I would have been willing to have included it in that chapter. Putting everything together, I think Tenn. or KY are the most likely. But, a handheld exam could change that and I will look forward to seeing the horn in person some day. Is it possible to get back to the auction house and then to the consigner for more information? This is a good example of why we need every small bit of history about these horns when they turn up. It is far from a precise science and the makers and owners were not thinking of us in the period. There is precious little hard data with which to work."
 

Tim Crosby:
 A Second note:
  "Western VA could certainly be a possibility. I just do  not have much early material from that section. I make the point in the Tenn. (Vol II) chapter that WNC, SWVA and east Tenn and KY are contiguous and overlap in the period and though I have to pick a present day state for the chapters this is a bit arbitrary and to be more accurate one should think of them as an area, certainly in the 18th century. I tend to be influenced by the horns I have for the study and that depended on the people that turned them up originally."

 
 

Tanselman:
Tim,

Thanks for the great posting and feedback from Jay. I will measure the butt plug diameter and height, and see if I can turn the nose screw out without damage to the plug...but if it's too tight, I'll probably leave it alone. A friend of mine purchased the horn at auction recently here in Indiana, knew I liked horns, and sold it to me. I'll see if I can get the auction name/number and check on what they know, and if they possibly might provide the consignor's name/number.   Shelby

Tim Crosby:

--- Quote from: Tanselman on October 01, 2018, 04:26:08 AM ---Tim,

Thanks for the great posting and feedback from Jay. I will measure the butt plug diameter and height, and see if I can turn the nose screw out without damage to the plug...but if it's too tight, I'll probably leave it alone. A friend of mine purchased the horn at auction recently here in Indiana, knew I liked horns, and sold it to me. I'll see if I can get the auction name/number and check on what they know, and if they possibly might provide the consignor's name/number.   Shelby

--- End quote ---

 That would be great, as Jay says the more you know or can get, even some small piece of information
 helps fill in the blanks. 

   Tim

PS: I checked on a piece from a Cowan's auction once, they would not give me the consignors name but they passed my contact information on to them and I got a call. Tim

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