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Abstract

This paper discusses research conducted on an assemblage of colonial spurs from Maryland and Delaware. The author has conducted this research for the purpose of adding the artifact category to the “Small Finds” section of the “Diagnostic Artifacts in Maryland” webpage. Identification and dating of spurs will be discussed, as will the value and meaning of spurs to the individuals who wore them. Spurs are not simply functional objects associated with horsemanship, they also represent items of personal adornment that can offer insight into status marking and boot styles worn in different time periods. This research draws from probate inventories, paintings, and other primary historical documents to create web content for archaeologists who are looking for accessible, reputable information on occasionally discovered small finds for which source material is scarce.

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