Bottle hunting reccomendations

ecampbell

Piney
Jan 2, 2003
2,491
549
1,093
I walked a fresh plow line that was run through the town of Mount and all kinds of old stuff was exposed. All broken of course. Same at Friendship with the dozer.
 

46er

Piney
Mar 24, 2004
8,344
1,829
1,093
Coastal NJ
"Chas. B. Mathis Main Street Toms River N.J.
Chas B. Mathis was a doctor that formed The Mathis Company, producing drugs and medical supplies. He had a store in Island Heights and lived in Toms River where the company existed. His store still stands and is on the Island Heights walking tour. You might consider donating the bottle to the Ocean County Historical Society in Toms River.



Built in 1879, this is the oldest intact storefront in Island Heights. Originally the building functioned as the Edwards Stage and Livery; Mr. Edwards would meet arrivals of the train and transport visitors and their luggage to their destination. The Mathis Store was a branch of The Mathis Company of Toms River selling "drugs, medicines, chemicals, dye-stuffs, fancy articles, brushes, patent medicine, perfume and stationary". Dr. Charles B. Mathis combined with Henry Clay Glover to market Mathis' cure for "mange", a skin disease in dogs, under the name of Glover's Mange Cure. Through the years this building has housed a drugstore, restaurant, confectionery, newsstand, grocery, bakery (the ovens are still in the basement), general store, cigar store, barber shop, ice cream parlor, meeting place, Methodist Church Hall, toy store, antiques emporium, art gallery, florist and craft gallery. The gambrel roof, originally a Dutch Colonial characteristic, was used frequently in Shingle Style buildings such as this one. The gambrel roof allowed for a much roomier upper level than the more steeply pitched roof of the Queen Anne or Gothic Revival Styles.
 

GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
1,035
277
1,063
Little Egg Harbor
Can folks stop by to watch?
Only the immediate site of the dig is off limits to the public due to the complexity related to the number of people involved. The site was extremely crowed with staff and participating students last Saturday. There looked to be about 30+ people taking part. Most of the activity was being concentrated on what was believed to be a privy site. This Saturday will be the last day.
 

CurMUDgeon

Scout
Apr 30, 2010
73
20
8
39
Where needed.
Many of the old and beautiful bottles that grace my shelves turned up in my Shinnecock rake while raking clam in Barnegat Bay. Having a clamming licence at the time, I don't know of any legal reason not to have kept them. There's probably countless more out there and you benefit by getting some tasty little necks in the process!
 
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bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,216
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Pines; Bamber area
Many of the old and beautiful bottles that grace my shelves turned up in my Shinnecock rake while raking clam in Barnegat Bay. Having a clamming licence at the time, I don't know of any legal reason not to have kept them. There's probably countless more out there and you benefit by getting some tasty little necks in the process!
That sounds interesting. Is that a pastime still enjoyed by many, or are the restrictions too onerous?
 

GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
1,035
277
1,063
Little Egg Harbor
I've found bottles while clamming as well. I've also found them at low tide, partially buried in the mud, near the sites of old gun clubs at low tide. I've never compared numbers, but I imagine the gun clubs on the bayshore and island meadows were once as common as those in the pines. Bob, as far as restrictions go, I think anything found while fishing or clamming below the high tide line is fair game. I don't think anything other than shipwreck sites are considered historic sites on the bay bottom.
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,216
1,912
1,093
Pines; Bamber area
Here is an interesting broken bottle kicked up by my tire when I parked in the woods today in Chatsworth. It is only 1 1/4" in diameter. Pretty stingy. Here is what I can read:

Garrett and Co. Inc.
Established 1835
Virginia Dare Wine
New York
Contents 2/5 pint.

There's a patent number on the bottom too.

Wine.PNG
 
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CurMUDgeon

Scout
Apr 30, 2010
73
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39
Where needed.
bobpbx -

A NJ Resident Recreational Shellfish License can be had for the bargain price of $10.00! If you are 62 or older, the price drops to $2.00!
http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/pdf/marine_shellfish_license.pdf

This allows you to harvest 150 clams greater than 1.5" per day. With little necks going for around $29.oo per hundred, a bit of time and talent with a rake, tongs, or one's (protected) feet can pay you back in a short amount of time.
 
Oct 14, 2009
40
3
8
Little Egg Harbor
When I go walking through the woods, I always pick up beer cans and bottles, Wawa trash, plastic bags.....the old Girl Scout way of "Leave it cleaner than you found it". Is that wrong or illegal? Or will today's trash be tomorrow's artifacts?
 

Ben Ruset

Administrator
Site Administrator
Oct 12, 2004
7,330
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Asbury Park, NJ
Technically yes, today's trash will be tomorrow's artifacts. That said, there will be no shortage of crap that we've left for future archaeologists so it's perfectly a-ok to carry out litter.
 
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Stamos

Scout
Jun 11, 2009
58
31
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South Jersey
Thanks JeepWagoneer! My go to beach is at Corson's Inlet from the boat launch parking lot. The D-ville in is my "cool down" spot afterwards! I need to get my diving cert. apparently.
 

JeepWagoneer

Scout
Jul 31, 2015
37
18
8
Medford NJ
Thanks JeepWagoneer! My go to beach is at Corson's Inlet from the boat launch parking lot. The D-ville in is my "cool down" spot afterwards! I need to get my diving cert. apparently.

There's all kinds off cool stuff under the water off nj if you don't mind braving the cold murky water!
 

Pink*Sundew

New Member
Oct 18, 2009
2
0
1
Leaving old bottles in the ground does not "preserve" them. The longer they lay covered with dirt and tree roots, the more damaged they become. Most of them (like the ones in the photo above) are of no real dollar value and are just fun little things to hunt for. A bottle lover would have a very hard time leaving a nice old bottle lying in the swamp, when it could be taken home and cleaned up and enjoyed by many people. Unlike arrow points, if an old bottle lays in the dirt for another 50-100 years, it will just be reduced to nothing. IMO...........of course.
 

Ben Ruset

Administrator
Site Administrator
Oct 12, 2004
7,330
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Asbury Park, NJ
Leaving old bottles in the ground does not "preserve" them. The longer they lay covered with dirt and tree roots, the more damaged they become. Most of them (like the ones in the photo above) are of no real dollar value and are just fun little things to hunt for. A bottle lover would have a very hard time leaving a nice old bottle lying in the swamp, when it could be taken home and cleaned up and enjoyed by many people. Unlike arrow points, if an old bottle lays in the dirt for another 50-100 years, it will just be reduced to nothing. IMO...........of course.
Legions of archaeologists will disagree with you. It's because so much of our past has been preserved by being buried in the ground that we know as much as we do about what life in the past was like.

As for the "no real dollar value" - sure, it might not have a monetary value, but in 300 years that will be an artifact that might help teach future generations about life in the early 20th century. But if it gets dug up, cleaned up, and put on a mantle - what happens when the finder dies and an estate agent cleans out all of the stuff that the relatives didn't take from the house and tosses all of the "old junk" into a landfill? It's gone forever.

I don't get how a glass bottle in situ on preserved land will eventually decay. For example, here's some bottles from the 17th century: http://britisharchaeology.ashmus.ox.ac.uk/highlights/bottlesandseals.html

Have I personally taken interesting bottles that I've found? Yes, but not since I started to research proper archaeological methods and began to understand why souvenir hunting is such a bad idea.
 
Excellent response, Ben!

Glass does not break down over time. It is an inert material that can only be reduced by breakage and/or fire.

Removal of buried material culture, whether by bottle hunting or metal detecting, has a high probability of damaging or destroying an in situ discreet archaeological site that could yield important historical information. By its very nature, archaeology is destructive, but by employing proven scientific methods for excavations, formulated research questions will be answered through that destruction.

Pride of the find or pride of ownership is never a valid reason for potholing an archaeological site.

Best regards,
Jerseyman