Metallica! Not the heavy metal band … heavy metal pipes! : Pipes and Tobaccos Magazine

Metallica! Not the heavy metal band … heavy metal pipes!

According to Warman’s Antiques and Their Prices (1991) “… the collecting of antique pipes is an amorphous, maligned and misunderstood hobby.” Not quite accurate, but what is fact is that collectors of antique pipes are fortunate. They have lots of choices, from ceramic, clay, block and pressed meerschaum, porcelain, and wood, to the more esoteric formats in agate, amber, argillite, calabash, Catlinite, glass, stag horn, stoneware … and even metal. The stories about metal pipes in Pipe Lovers magazine address the usual suspects—from Alco to Kirsten to Zephair—20th-century brands familiar to most pipe smokers. Although many of today’s metal-chamber pipes and similar gadgets are targeted to a different class of smokers, I am thinking of an earlier time, when some curious-looking metal pipes were contrived and crafted.

Throughout time, although not in every country, metal pipes were in use, and various uncommon materials were employed: brass, bronze, copper, iron, lead, pewter and silver. Some were very primitive, many were quite elegant, and others were freak creations. Most trade pipes, as they were called, made by Europeans and Americans, were iron, much less often copper, and they were used in the exchange of furs and other goods with Native Americans. Base metal and pewter pipes have been unearthed at sites from Canada to South Carolina.

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Category: An Amazing Story, Pipe Articles, Winter 2018

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