Pre-1865 Pipes For A Film

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akfilm

Can't Leave
Mar 2, 2016
309
1
Hello,
I'm involved in a fairly large film that has pipe smoking in it. The script is originally set in 1863 on the western frontier, but production may pull it back to the 1840's. What type of pipes would a gentlemen be smoking in this time period? Had briars made it that far west yet?

 

mayfair70

Lifer
Sep 14, 2015
1,968
0
For poor local folk a homemade corn cob. For rich city folk and European types, a briar with silver. Specific brands and types are sure to follow. California would have a strong Asian smoking influence... so ivory, lacquer and the like.

 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
17,247
34,503
SoCal
jrs457.wixsite.com
1860's - Clays, cobs, meers, and pipes whittled from local woods. Might be a bit early for briars to have made it to the western frontier though it's possible. The exportation of briar pipes from France (where they were invented) to England only came about in the early 1850's.
If set in the 1840's, meers, clays, maybe cobs, maybe some kind of local wood, possibly Asian style metal pipes in certain areas of the Pacific Coast, but definitely no briar pipes.
KB&B was around in the 1850's.

 

aldecaker

Lifer
Feb 13, 2015
4,407
39
Clays. Definitely lots of clays. They were literally imported by the barrel, packed in straw, from what I understand.

 

georged

Lifer
Mar 7, 2013
4,104
7,190
Any of these should do the trick, I think:
https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/new/tokutomi/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=23180
https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/new/tokutomi/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=19060
https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/new/gotoh/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=223610
https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/new/adam-davidson/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=53664

 

fitzy

Lifer
Nov 13, 2012
2,937
22
NY
Funny one George. Hey were all of those still listed for sale when you posted those links? :D

 

georged

Lifer
Mar 7, 2013
4,104
7,190
Hey were all of those still listed for sale when you posted those links?
They were all listed and sold before 1865. They wouldn't have been period-correct otherwise.
Duh
:wink:

 
Jan 8, 2013
7,493
723
Some briar, I believe, wouldn't have been unheard of. You can find photos of Civil War officers smoking what I'm pretty sure are quite modern looking briar pipes. But I think most pipes available at that time, were the one piece clay pipes very much the same as those during the 1600s and 1700s (Man! Clay pipes have been around for a long time!) and then also, clay pipes that were just a clay bowl with a reed stem added to them. 1863 would have been around the American Civil War, so a google image search of civil war era clay pipes will bring up many great examples. Cobs too. Pretty much everything some of the other's have said above my post... I just wanted to feel important and sound like I know what I'm talking about :mrgreen:

 

virginiacob

Can't Leave
Dec 30, 2013
450
4
Clay pipes definitely. Both white and terra cotta clay pipes have been excavated at both Union and Confederate campsites. During the Civil War, most clay stem clay pipes were typically shorter stems than their 18th c. counterparts. Clays were very fragile, so a shorter stem clay pipe was much easier to carry in the field with less risk of breakage. Reed stem clay pipes were also extremely popular, probably more so than their clay stem counterparts, as the pipe could be "dis-assembled" for easy transport on the march and then quickly reassembled when ready for use. Also, if the reed became damaged, it could easily be replaced by cutting another reed in the vicinity.
Corn cob pipes were also in use. During this period they would have been handmade as the commercial manufacture of cob pipes didn't occur until after the Civil War (credited to Henry Tibbe, founder of MM, around 1869). These "homemade" corn cob pipes would have had simple. but functional reed stems like the reed stem clay pipes.
Carved wood pipes were also in use, usually with hollowed wood stems such as walnut or cherry, and fitted with mouth bits, typically made from horn or vulcanized rubber, or carved from wood. Briar pipes were in existance but somewhat rare in North America in the 1860s. Wooden pipes are often seen being used by officers in period photographs, but many enlisted soldiers used them as well and often carved them themselves out of available wood around their campsites. Soldiers would have typically carried these in their knapsacks while on the march to protect them from damage until they were off duty and could put them to use.
Meeschaum pipes would have also been in existance during the War, but meerschaum pipes in the 19th century were very expensive and somewhat exotic, so it would have been somewhat rare to see an enlisted soldier smoking a meerschaum unless he took it off the body of a fallen enemy officer. When meerschaums were smoked, it would most likely have been smoked by higher ranking officers in both the Union and Confederate armies.

 

akfilm

Can't Leave
Mar 2, 2016
309
1
I knew this brain trust could help! I'm going to pass on all this information to the Art Director and Propmaster. Thank you, such a wealth of information in this group!

 
There was a mini-series about the Klondike, which was pretty good, except the cob one of the main characters smoked was obviously a new Missuouri Meerscahum. It just distracted me. If you decide to use s cob or two, Use Old Dominion cobs. The MM pipes have plastic stems, and the OD cobs use reeds, which is more period correct.

 

bigpond

Lifer
Oct 14, 2014
2,019
12
There's archaeological evidence of briar, red clay and "other" wood pipes in US in the West in the 1840's. Quality clay pipes were falling out of fashion by the 60's replaced by meerschaum and cheaper, clay pipes. Even at this point pipe smoking was declining in interest with the rise of cigars.
Here's a report about pipes in the archaeological record of Fort Vancouver, which coincides with your time frame.
http://www.nps.gov/fova/learn/historyculture/upload/TobaccoPipes-SMALL.pdf

 

mso489

Lifer
Feb 21, 2013
39,479
52,398
Virginiacob gave the historical rundown. I'd add that his Old Dominion reed stem pipes might come pretty close to what would have been handmade at the time. You might say they are the pipe smoking re-enacters friend.

 

akfilm

Can't Leave
Mar 2, 2016
309
1
It does bug me though when I see non-period things in films because they were easy to find, or "look good".

 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
17,247
34,503
SoCal
jrs457.wixsite.com
It does bug me though when I see non-period things in films because they were easy to find, or "look good".
Not uncommon, though. Watch out that someone doesn't stick a Brylon pipe in the shot. I've always found researching for accuracy enjoyable and rewarding like when I need to establish the NYC sky circa 1915 for a show I was working on.

 

ophiuchus

Lifer
Mar 25, 2016
1,530
1,953
Clay pipes were cheap to produce and were being given away with tobacco sales by mid-19th century. Poker-style pipes with single-piece wooden stems were being made by this time, with bowls made out of cherrywood and walnut (if they have to be made for the production, no stain please! ;) ).

 

davet

Lifer
May 9, 2015
3,814
292
Estey's Bridge N.B Canada
I've always found researching for accuracy enjoyable and rewarding
Kudos to you Jesse :clap: I wish this attitude was more wide spread. I find it very annoying when something is portrayed that is wrong when two minutes on Google would have corrected it. One episode of Friends had Ross wake up on the train in Montreal (no border crossing or customs) and was told by a girl going to Nova Scotia that it was a two hour ferry ride. It's at least an ten hour drive, a day or two on the ferry would be more like it.

Don't get me started on Brave Heart :roll:

 
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