Northeast Historical Archaeology


Excavations related to a large sewer construction project in St. John’s, Newfoundland exposed several examples of tailor’s chalk lost during the Great Fire of 1892. Made from pipe clay, these objects may be the first of their kind identified on an archaeological site in North America. This paper introduces the changing social and economic position of tailors and other clothing-related trades in St. John’s. Tailor’s chalks are discussed within the context of the clay tobacco pipe industry, particularly the non tobacco-related objects produced, and within the tailoring trade throughout the early modern period.