The Top Finds in Granby

Below are a ranking of our most important finds.

The following links take you to the artifact pictures for each pit/level that produced the artifact:

Number 1: Friday's Ferry Site Found

Above: Photo (by Granby lead archaeologist DC Locke) of ferry/bridge structure in the Congaree River

In 2007, as part of his project: Congaree River Historic Mapping Project, land surveyor William J. Schumpert decided to checkout a location on the Congaree River where his research pointed to the possible location of one of South Carolina's most famous crossings.

Friday's Ferry started in 1750 to help European settlers and friendly Native Americans cross the river to Fort Congaree II. The town of Granby soon formed around the ferry landing. The British operated Fort Granby during the Revolution where sieges of the fort are recognized as the most significant Revolutionary War events of Lexington and Richland Counties. In 1786, Granby's "Friday's Ferry" was considered as the location for the new Capital of South Carolina but was rejected because of flooding and "health" issues. The new city of Columbia (and Capital), formed across the river and President George Washington crossed at Friday's Ferry in 1791 on his way to the smaller town of Columbia. Granby's Wade Hampton would invest heavily in Columbia and he built three bridges at Friday's Ferry in the 1790s.

As Schumpert paddled around where he thought the ferry landing may have been, he noticed a mostly buried wooden structure in the west bank of the Congaree River. Schumpert filed a site report with the South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology. A team of archaeologists soon arrived and, not only verified the structure was Granby period, but also found the old road bed leading to the location. .

As word of the discovery slowly moved through the local history community, David Brinkman began doing his own surveying in 2010 with computer overlays of the State surveys of 1818 and the Columbia Canal survey of 1870. The overlays agreed with Schumpert's work and Brinkman now had an idea of where the boundaries of Granby fell on today's landscape.

Just a few hundred feet from the discovered Ferry landing location, Brinkman and his wife noticed a foreclosed house and were compelled, by unknown forces, to purchase the neglected property. As major repairs were made to the house, Brinkman did more Granby research and the idea of archaeology on the site became enticing. Unable to acquire professional help with the archaeology, the couple began their own training and volunteered in a professional dig. In 2012, the Brinkmans were ready to dig and, with other history friends, broke ground. They quickly discovered Colonial period artifacts.

In September of 2013, the Granby dig team completed a reconnaissance of the river around Friday's Ferry landing. A second similar wooden structure was found downstream. This leads us to believe that the structures may have been parts of the wooden Wade Hampton bridges which were all destroyed or washed away by floods. Hampton built all of his bridges at the site of Friday's Ferry. In 1798, Hampton's last bridge was described as the largest building in South Carolina. It was fully covered and stood 40 feet above the normal level of the river. It was a popular place for parties and weddings.You can learn more about the Friday Ferry site finds here.

Number 2: Pit 42 - 1786 Silver coin

Coins are great because they give us a date for an item. In this case, the date was the year that it was decided not to move the Capital of South Carolina to Granby but to a location two miles north on the other side of the river. And so, Columbia was formed. For the next five years, Granby would thrive and remained a larger and more popular location. Floods and health issues in Granby in the 1790's, and the continued growth of Columbia, would eventual be the death of Granby. This coin, no doubt, was passed around in Granby during her most prosperous years. This makes this, our number one dig artifact. You can learn more about the coin at this link.

Number 3: Pit 85 - Pipe bowl from Gouda, Holland.

This item is our largest pipe piece and four unique maker marks allow us to date it to the time 1740-1750. This is very important because it gives proof to the theory that Thomas Brown may have lived at this location. Brown died in 1747 and his land would be bought by Martin Friday. Friday started a ferry at the northern border of the old Brown property and this is what led to the development of Granby. Other items found at the Granby site are also probably from Brown like two early 18th century Jews harps (his main trade item with the Native Americans), stoneware pottery, and 80% of our pipe stems are from the period 1720-1750. It is amazing to think that this item was held by the man who started what would become Granby. You can learn more about the pipe pieces found in Granby at this link.

Number 4: Fort Congaree II

Some people would vote this as the biggest find of the Finding Granby project. After Thomas Brown died in 1747, certain Native Americans carried out a series of violent attacks and kidnapings against the European settlers. During this time, Martin Friday acquired Brown's property and started Friday's Ferry. A few hundred feet south of this (at a location reserved for a fort in the original Saxe Gotha survey from the 1730's), Fort Congaree II was completed in 1748. During our Granby research, Colonial plats of the Granby area were studied. One of them showed Fort Congaree II with a unique land feature that we noticed was still present. Overlays were completed and we identified the ideal place to do archaeology about 1000 feet south of the Granby dig site. The Fort Congaree II Dig team completed a dozen dig days over the summer of 2014 with the help of over 40 volunteers. All work was overseen by Dr. Jon Leader (the South Carolina State Archaeologist) and the team included 6 other archaeologists and many members of the Granby dig team. The first dig location (14 units) was completed at the end of August. When we started on May 31, 2014, within a couple of hours, the team came across a feature in Unit 3 that had characteristics of a palisade wall. Subsequent Units were opened to follow this feature. By the end of August 2014, we had also found characteristics of a fill area (the documented ditch around the outside of the fort) on both sides of the possible wall feature. Our site selection was chosen to hit the North-East bastion of the fort. The potential wall and ditch finds would indicate this bastion. Most features were found at the bottom of level 1 (10cm) or within level 2 (10-20cm). For this reason, some pits were not dug beyond a 10-20cm depth. Some units were dug to a depth of 40-50cm at which point artifacts were no longer found. We found about 160 possible period artifacts in the 14 units. There were several obvious period pottery pieces and several pipe pieces including a 1720-1750 pipe stem. A .35 caliber musket ball was also found deep in one of the units. On both sides of the possible wall feature, we found period handmade nails. You can learn more about Fort Congaree II at this link.

Number 5: Pit 80 - Dalton point (arrowhead)

This Dalton point item is really special because of its age. It could be 10,000 years old! The Granby dig site is within the area of the proposed 12,000 year history park where items of this age have been found. In the Granby dig, we have found that the Granby and Thomas Brown era items don't go much deeper than 50cms. In pit 80, we had just leveled off at 50cms and a final shovel of dirt gave a "ching" and there was one of our best finds. You can learn more about the Indian Arrowheads found in Granby at this link.

Number 6: Archival - Sarah Friday's Granby drawing (1810-1815)

Not all of our top finds are from digging dirt. Some come from digging the archives. In an old book about Columbia, I had found a reference to this drawing made by a young Sarah Friday (great-granddaughter of Martin Friday). The drawing eluded me for two years until it was found in the South Carolinia Library. Although Granby was on the downfall by 1810, Sarah does get a great snapshot of the residents including what we believe were the owners of the site we are digging: Samuel Johnston and family lived in Granby from 1790 until about 1815. Sarah would marry John Bryce who would become a mayor of Columbia. Her drawing may be the only surviving image of Granby. You can learn more about Sarah Friday's drawing at this link.

Number 7: The Old State House and Rives Tavern

Another project spawned by our Granby research.. Timothy Rives was the first Granby tavern owner just after the Revolutionary war. Rives moved his operation to the new Capital city of Columbia in 1790 at the south-west corner of Richardson (Main) and Senate Streets, just across the street from the Old State House. The above 1794 illustration shows the Tavern and Old State House. Research began to locate the tavern and it seemed the best shot at doing that was to search for the basement foundations of the Old State House which was also burned in 1865. Many measurements were taken from drawings of the old State House and of a floor plan from the 1830s. The floor plan had no dimensions but I was able to interpolate the size based on carefully drawn steps from the basement to the first floor. The result was a building that was 80' X 37.5'. I verified these outer dimensions by measuring the size of the Palmetto (Mexican War) monument on today's State House grounds. That monument stood in front of the Old State House between 1855 and 1861. A detailed illustration was made of the building and monument in 1861. The relative sizes matched with the interpolated 80'X35.5' size of the building. Continuing the math, the basement landing would have been 2' to 3' below ground. After determining the exact size and location of the old State House, the site was visited after the great flood of October of 2015. A number of artifacts were observed in an eroded area where the corner of the Old State would have stood. A number of these artifacts matched the types and age of our Granby building artifacts. That Granby building happened to be the same age of the Old State House (built between 1788 and 1790). One common item was imported English window glass. Multiple pieces of this melted glass were found and one appeared to have lead in its center (lead strips were used in that period to hold pieces of window glass together). Unlike glass of today, this old glass (and lead) will melt at the temperature that wood burns so it would be expected that this melted glass would be found in the ruins of the Old State House. Additional measurements were made using period documentation and maps to determine the relative position of Rives Tavern to the Old State House. Rives tavern was sold a couple of times but remained a tavern until the building was burned by the Union Army in 1865. Inspecting this other location led to the discovery (on the ground surface) of late 18th century pottery and green wine glass as well as ginger beer bottle fragments from 1830 to 1865. They were, obviously, artifacts of Rives Tavern. This research lays the groundwork for archaeological work to excavate the Old State House and tavern as well as finding what may be hidden in the ruins of the Old State House (See the research paper I completed on the lost Charleston Calhoun statue at this link).

Number 8: Found in most pits: - Pearlware Kitchen Pottery

Kitchen pottery is our most common artifact. Over 20% of our artifacts are in this category. We have found many different types of Kitchen pottery but, in general, most of these are imported from England and are not something the average person would have afforded. This is not surprising given documentation that indicates Granbians were relatively wealthy people. As far as aging the pottery pieces, the most easy type to identify is the Pearlware type. It is very common in our finds as can be seen in the above picture from pit 22 where the Pearlware stands-out with its unique bluish tint. Pearlware like this was only made from 1775-1840 which covers the Granby period.

Number 9: Pit 51 and 67 - Jews Harps

This musical item caught us by surprise in pit 51 but by the time we found a second one, in pit 67, we had learned that Indian Trader Thomas Brown had been trading Jews Harps with the Natives. In fact, it was the only item left in his inventory at his death in 1747. A Jews harp was useless if the vibrating tongue was broken off. In pit 67, we found the Jews harp mixed with charcoal and, at the same level, what appeared to be Native American pottery. Brown's wife was a Catawba Indian. Maybe he was playing his harp for his wife by the fire when the instrument was broken and, thus, thrown into the fire. The charcoal artifact excavated with the harp may tell us, through carbon dating, the age of this event.You can learn more about the Jews harp at this link.

Number 10: Pit 37 - Stock Lock tumbler

At first, we thought this was a rusty nail but cleaning showed it was something very unique. It was a mystery until I stumbled across it in a book about Colonial American artifacts. It was the lock tumbler in the standard English 9 inch stock lock. Probably the lock on the house's front door. Making this find even more fascinating is that fact that we found the same lock purchased by Jacob Geiger in 1784 as recorded in the Congarees Store account book (held by the Cayce Museum). You can learn more about the lock piece at this link.

Number 11: Pit 97 - Black Basalt (Wedgwood) Coffee/Tea Pot

Flooding and health problems in Granby, coupled with the development of Columbia, led to an exodus of people in the 1790s. By 1815, Granby may have lost half of its residents. Many more would leave after the county seat was moved from Granby to the new town of Lexington in 1818. It is documented that only three families were in Granby in 1850 and many of the old homes were colasping. General William Sherman noted that part of his troops camped in "Old Granby" just defore the invasion of Columbia in 1865. From that point on, half of Granby became farmland and the other half fell victim to the Quarry and quarry slag piles. Our dig site was farmland as can be seen in a 1939 aerial photo. Not surprising, the artifacts we find have been broken into small pieces by the plow. Sometimes we can find a critical part of a bottle which allows us to identify the item and its age. Ceramic types and ages can be identified from a small piece but determining what the whole item was (bowl, plate, cup) is much more difficult. In Pit 97, however, we got lucky with a rare ceramic piece that had a unique design on it. This Black Basalt (Wedgwood) piece was almost certainly a specific coffee/tea pot that was made by Josiah Wedgwood in England around 1790. A pot like this was very expensive and goes along when documentation that suggests Granbians were wealthy people. Period newspaper ads from Charles Town show the price for a dinner-set of "Wedgwood and Liverpool" cost what today would be $2000 to $3200. You can learn more about the coffee/tea pot piece at this link.

Number 12: Archival: 1790 Newspaper ad for our Granby property.

Another big find in the library. This 1790 ad describes a lot that was 100 yards from the Granby Ferry landing. This could be the property of our dig site but it could also be several other properties. We know a large tobacco warehouse and inspection station was at the ferry site during this time so that would narrow this down to maybe only two possible home sites. We believe, based on Sarah Friday's drawing of Granby (1810-1815), that the Samuel Johnston family lived at our dig site. This is shown in Sarah's drawing. Samuel married Catherine Harrison in 1790 which seems to be the time that Samuel bought the Granby house and property. We think there is a very good possibility that Samuel (who did not live in the area before his marriage) found out about the Granby property through this August 1790 ad in the City Gazette of Charlestown, SC. You can learn more about who lived in Granby at this link.

Number 13: Pit 72,75,76,and 79 - Aligned Post Holes and building features

Not all finds in Granby are archival or archaeological artifacts. Some finds are archaeological features. A simple way to describe these features is as a stain in the ground. A wood post left in the ground will leave an obvious dark round spot. Excavated and filled areas will leave a color change. We believe the combination of these features is a building structure. This find occurred over four adjacent pits. Based on Granby artifacts found in this same area (brick, nails and window glass) it would probably be the north-east corner of the Johnston house (1790-1815). But, we have also found artifacts from two generations before the Johnston House. Indian trader Thomas Brown lived here (1730-1747) so it could be his cabin. It will take more digging to solve this mystery. You can learn more about these post holes at this link.

Number 14: Multiple Pits - Musket Balls/Shots

A significant number of pits have given us lead balls that range in size from .19 to .60 caliber. Just a few hundred feet away, on May 1, 1781, "South Carolina Patriot militia Lt. Col. Henry Hampton attacked the British detachment guarding Friday's Ferry. Hampton's men killed 13 of them. Hampton then attacked another small detachment on their way to Fort Granby. Another 5 were killed in this action and Hampton captured a number of horses and slaves." Some of these balls could also be from before the Rev War like from the hunting of early traders like Thomas Brown. There is even the possibilty that some balls could be from the Civil War. You can learn more about the musket balls/shots found in Granby at this link.

Number 15: Pits 34,94, and 97 - Civil War Finds

Possible Civil War artifact finds in Granby include a bullet, shell, gun barrel, and Prosser button. The button post-dates Granby and was likely from the undergarment of a Union soldier. General William Sherman mentioned camping in Old Granby shortly after the Battle of Congaree Creek and the following newspaper story raises the possibility that some of the lead balls we have found could be from this 14 year-old Confederate Granby sniper. Keep in mind that, in the 1800s, "Granby Landing" was the old site of Friday's Ferry. It was not the site of today's Granby Landing which is 1 mile south.

You can learn more about these Civil War finds at this link.

Number 16: Pit 95 - Ancient Peace Pipe Tobacco

The biggest find pit 95 would not unfold until the next day after cleaning. Not much notice was given to a small charcoal deposit in level 3 but, nevertheless, it was carefully excavated. Later on, after more care in the cleaning, tiny insect or seed like pieces were found in the charcoal. Microscopic examination and some expert evaluation seemed to indicate that the items are tiny burned seed pods. A lot of time was done researching this and the best guess is that this was the very young flower seed-pod of a tobacco plant. The amount of charcoal we found was, in fact, just about what you would expect to come out of a smoking pipe. Europeans only used the tobacco leaves for smoking but Native Americans were known to smoke these flower/pods in ceremonies.

"Instead of pinching off the tobacco flowers to make the leaves grow bigger, American Indians harvested the flowers (before they went to seed). The most prized smoking tobacco was that made from the flowers. Buffalo Bird Woman related to an anthropologist how the Indians made smoking tobacco, from planting the seed to final cure."

The careful excavation of the charcoal that was with these tobacco seeds could, through Radio Carbon Dating, give us a date for this Native American event. You can learn more about the ancient tobacco find at this link.

Number 17: Pit 8, 46, and 62 - Granby Beer/Wine Bottles

This find involves three bottle pieces. One bottle top from pit 62 which had just the right shape and size to match a green bottle from 1800. It's better, however, if you can also get a bottom piece of the bottle which we did with the bottle top found in pit 8 and a bottom piece found in pit 46. The unique combination of the top and bottom design of an old bottle makes it possible to confidently date a bottle type to about 5 or 10 years. The shape of our pit 46 bottom piece is similar to several bottles between the years of 1761 and 1809 but, when you look at the bottle top (same type of green glass) it narrows it down to just the 1804 bottle. The mouth design and size (outside diameter of 1.5") are the same and, maybe even more unique, is the neck piece. The neck is not curved like most bottles and the angle it takes is just like the 1804 bottle. Furthermore, the 1804 bottle was one of the few wide bottles shown in the artifact drawings. The drawing shows it to have a base diameter of just a little less than 4 inches. The base piece we found had a perfect curvature outline on the inside of the piece. It was difficult to measure but we finally took a digital image of it and processed the image to extract this curvature outline. A complete circle was drawn to match the curvature and the diameter of the circle ended up being 3.85 inches. It was a fat bottle matching the base measurement of the 1804 bottle! This is a very important find because it's the first real date we have on this green bottle glass which we are finding in about 75% of the pits. In this case, 1804 would point to the owner of our Granby House: Samuel Johnston whose family lived in Granby from 1790 to 1815.You can learn more about the at this link.

Number 18: Pit 86 - Thomas Brown Beer/Wine Bottle

Similar to the Granby bottle finds, pit 86 gave us two bottle top pieces and a bottom piece. From the curvature of the bottom piece, we measured that the bottle would have had a 4.5" diameter at the bottom. The two top pieces gave us an almost complete bottle top and we were able to match this and the bottom piece to bottles made between 1739 and 1751. This is a little too early for Granby so it must have belonged to the previous land owner: Indian trader Thomas Brown and his Catawba wife.You can learn more about the Brown bottle at this link.

Number 19: Pit 22, 68, and 80 - Brown Salt Glazed Stoneware

This very easy to identify stoneware type was made in England from 1690 to 1775 and made in America starting in 1730. This is a special item because it could cover both the Thomas Brown period and the early Granby period. One piece from pit 68, however, has a distinct difference. It is not glazed on the inside. This could mean that it was an early american form of the Brown Salt Glazed Stoneware and, very likely, belonged to Thomas Brown. You can learn more about this possible Thomas Brown item at this link.

Number 20: Multiple Pits - Buttons & Buckles

It would not be a Colonial period dig site without these items. All of them them are Granby period with the exception of the Prosser button (white button) which is Civil War period. Learn more about the Buttons and the Buckles at these links.

Number 21: All Pits - Granby Brick

Brick is a very common item we find in Granby. From very small "Granby gram" pieces to a full standard Colonial period size brick. It's standard in South Carolina Archaeology to not count brick pieces as artifacts. If we did, our artifact total would probably quadruple. We do, however, weigh the brick pieces per pit and use this (along with nails, window glass, and post hole finds) to determine where a Granby building had been located. In Granby, bricks were mostly used as the foundation segments and fireplace/chimney like seen in the 1817 drawing of the Friday Arthur house in Granby. The brick that made up the inside of the fireplace takes on a grey color and is very hard which allows it to survive in larger pieces. Other brick became soft and was broken up into small pieces by plowing of the land.You can learn more about Granby bricks at this link.

Number 22: Pit 25 and 39 - Iron Pot

At the time of this find in pit 25, this iron pot piece (with a leg), was our largest artifact and was verified by the South Carolina State Archaeologist. Pit 39 would give us another piece of the pot. The Congarees Store account book also showed a similar item bought by a Mr. Turner in 1784. You can learn more about the Iron pot find at this link.

Number 23: All Pits: Hand made nails

Hand forged nails represent 11% of the artifacts found in Granby. They come in several different types: T-Head, L-Head, and Rose-Head. They are all hand wrought and square which means they were made before 1800. The above image of the 1784 Congarees Store (in Granby) account book shows where brothers Wade and Richard Hampton bought 500 nails. We believe the Samuel Johnston house (which we are digging) was built around 1784. Maybe the Hampton's were the builders and we are finding some of the nails they bought over 230 years ago. Almost all the nails we find are rusted but about 1 in 600 are not. We got a good appraisal from the South Carolina State Archaeologist (Dr. Jonathan Leader) of one of these pristine nails found in pit 92. The lack of rust was because of a protective coating that naturally occurred in the process of creating the nail. But, that would only last if the nail remained undamaged. Dr. Leader further explained that after shaping/cutting of the nail, it was dipped in oil. He said the oil can still be seen on this nail. He said it was a flooring nail. Folded at 1 inch means the wood was 1 inch thick. Dr. Leader said that holes were probably drilled which is why the oil was not lost on the nail when it was put into place. That's how a nail in the ground can avoid rusting for hundreds of years. Check out this link on pit 60 where we found 49 Granby nails.

Number 24: Pit 43 - Cloth with Indigo dye

Finding cloth deep in level 3 of pit 43 was a big surprise. All the other artifacts from the level were Granby and Native American. It is, however, possible for cloth to survive in the ground for hundreds of years. The cloth pieces had the obvious color of Indigo blue which was very common in Granby. In 1968, Gladys N. Chambers wrote the book: "The History of Cayce, South Carolina" and noted the following about Granby Indigo. Was Indigo another reason for the downfall of Granby?

"The indigo plant had been first brought to North America into South Carolina in 1742 by Elizabeth Lucas Pinckney, and had become one of the main home industries of this area. Millions of pounds were also shipped to the dye plants in Europe. Sometimes the plant grew wild, but as a chief source of income it was cultivated. The ground was plowed near the end of the year, and some mulching done. In the following spring the seeds were sown. The plants were cut two times each year, once in the early or midsummer, and the second time about two months later. The dark blue dye was used in calico printing and dyeing, also for other materials."

Chambers later notes:

"The last record found of Granby as one of the LEADING TOWNS of South Carolina was in 1815. Rumors of mosquitoes and a low, sandy place were circulated when the talk of changing the Capital from Charles Town to some central place was in progress (in 1786). This had its effect on the popularity of the town. Many of the Granby people who grew indigo plants were building summer homes in other places, because of the many mosquitoes. The water used in making the dye for home use became stagnant and thus bred millions of mosquitoes." Check out the many cool items found in level 3 of pit 43 at this link.

Number 25: Archival - Location of Thomas Brown property

Several of the previous top finds have mentioned the theory that, prior to Granby, trader Thomas Brown lived on the Granby dig site. Many artifacts have been found which place him at this location between 1740 and his death in 1747. Part of our Granby research has been genealogy and the building of family trees of the people who lived in Granby. This discovery was made by members of the Friday family doing their own genealogy work. They found the following index to a title chain in the South Carolina Archives under: Series: S111001, Volume: 0006, Page: 00074, Item: 000, Date: 4/11/1763. They pulled the microfilm that gave the details. In our building of land plats, we already knew that John Mathews had the original land grant for the property of our dig. The Friday family discovery shows that Thomas Brown bought the property from John Mathews in 1740 and it went to Brown's son after Thomas' death in 1747. This leaves little doubt that Thomas Brown did live on this land and probably carried out many trade transactions here as indicated by the trade and Native American artifacts we have found here.

Side note: The discovery of Fort Congaree II (shown in the above land plat overlay) also gives more proof to Brown's property location. The adjacent Fort Congaree II property and Brown's property shared the same pond. Elevation mapping of today shows the pond is still there today although it only fills with water (to the dismay of Riverland Park residents) when the river is high.

See more about the Granby land plats at this link. Learn more about the people who lived in Granby at this link. Find even more about the people who lived in Granby by clicking on places in Sarah Friday's 1810 drawing of Granby at this link.

Number 26: Most Pits - Native American Pottery & Tools

Native American artifacts represent about 3% of the artifact total in the Granby dig. The period from Granby until modern times (270 years) is very short compared to the time Native Americans have been here (12,000 years). So why don't we find more items from the Natives? We would find more if we dug deeper since older items are buried over time because of the cycles of plant life that die and turn to dirt. In this area, ants are also responsible for moving dirt up which covers items on the surface. Of the Indian items we find, pottery is the most common followed by tools. This mosaic is an example of some of these items we have found in the Granby dig. Learn more about Native Americans in Granby.

Number 27: Pit 22 - Carpenter's Ruler

This is an example of making a bad first guess on an artifact. We, originally, thought this might be the brass pivot mechanism of a Civil War era pocket knife. It really didn't seem possible, however, that the blade could have been attached to this with the strength you need in a knife. Dr. Leader (South Carolina State Archaeologist) immediately recognized it as the part of a possible Granby era Carpenter's ruler. Now that made more sense and this picture of an antique ruler from London confirms it. Check out this and other finds from pit 22 at this link.

Number 28: Pit 29 - Gator Bowl (pipe bowl)

We found a record 4 pipe stems (dated: 1720-1750) in pit 29 and, at the time, our largest pipe bowl piece. This decorated piece doesn't look like much until you turn it the right way. Sir Walter Raleigh and gator/croc clay pipes were popular in the mid-17th century. "The English were the first to make tobacco a consumer product. Sailor, explorer and writer Sir Walter Raleigh (1554-1618) is considered the one who popularized smoking. Thanks to him, it became fashionable in the court of Queen Elizabeth I, and soon spread to high society throughout Europe. The first commercial operations appeared, initially in Holland, in 1561, and later in Germany. Legend has it that Raleigh fell overboard off the coast of Virginia one day. He was seized by a crocodile, but the animal found the smell of smoke so repugnant that it released him! A series of pipes was produced bearing the likeness of this "hero" sometimes with crocodile included." You can see more cool finds from pit 29 at this link.

Number 29: Archival - Congarees Store account book analysis

As part of her Master's thesis, Kathy Keenan painstakingly transcribed the 1784-1788 Account book of the Congarees Store. This book is held by the Cayce Museum and was recently digitized by USC. Kathy's spreadsheet allows us to not only see who lived in Granby during this time, but to also see what they were buying and the relative wealth of the people. The images here show just a few things that can be taken from this data. The store is consistently busy during this time period except for an abrupt and complete shutdown in the months of March and April of 1786. This brings up the very important question: What happened at this time?

By the end of February, 1786, Wade Hampton had made large land buys around where the City of Columbia would be formed. He, apparently, had inside information that the Capital of SC would not be placed in Granby because of flooding and heath issues. On March 4th, 1786, Hampton's friend Senator John Lewis Gervais introduced a bill to move the State Capital from Charleston to a location "near Friday's Ferry". Gervais' plans (no doubt involving the Hampton's and Taylor's) would soon target the area of "Taylor's Hill", two miles north of Granby on the other side of the Congaree River. As can be seen in the Congarees Store account book, the Hampton's and Taylor's were the biggest customers of the Granby store. The Hampton brothers had just purchased Friday's Ferry in Granby in 1785. It seems very clear that these men saw a great opportunity to make money on a land resale and were able to influence Senator Gervais into selecting their desired site. On March 26th, 1786, Gervais succeeded in having the City of Columbia created in the middle of the Hampton and Taylor properties on the east side of the Congaree River. This must have been a very anxious and exciting time in Granby. On the last entry in the Congarees Store account book, before the store's temporarily closing in March of 1786, the bottom of the page has the word: "AMEN".

In April of 1786, the State of SC purchased over 1500 acres from the Taylor and Hampton brothers for the main grid of the new Capital city. On May 1st, 1786, the Charleston Morning Post reports that the area around the new Columbia is buzzing with activity and that saw mills are being built on every steam. The Congarees Store would re-open toward the end of May. Business was slow in June and picked up very well in July only to decline to nothing by the end of October.

Alert: Finding Granby research has recently uncovered evidence that pin-points the location of the Congarees Store.

More top items to come....