Charcoal pit locations?

Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
I think some of them are natural, even though the ones you have may not be.

View attachment 14840

natural-jpg.14840


I believe these are charcoal "pits"

Moderator note: this thread was created from posts that were split from this thread: https://forums.njpinebarrens.com/threads/2019-south-jersey-lidar.13666/#post-164081
 
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Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
your speaking of the lines of bumps in the upper left?
Yes, and throughout the image. I've found similar areas elsewhere that show the same thing. Not to make an argument from incredulity, but I'm aware of no geologic process in the Pines that would have produced these features. They are the right dimensions for charcoal pits and the equidistant spacing makes sense as each "pit" would have an area of trees unto itself. This was an extensive and systematic operation.
 
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Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
I"ll be looking for similar formations down here then.Are you going to check those bumps out?
yes. i have so many things i need to check out next time I'm down that way. As soon as the snow is all gone, I'm going to check out something I found on Lidar that may prove to be extremely significant archaeologically.
 
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GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
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Little Egg Harbor
The problem with the charcoal pit theory is that charcoal pits weren't actually "pits". The term was a carry-over from a charcoal burning process much prior. The aftermath of a charcoal pit should be a round, somewhat level area, albeit a charred one.
 
Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
The problem with the charcoal pit theory is that charcoal pits weren't actually "pits". The term was a carry-over from a charcoal burning process much prior. The aftermath of a charcoal pit should be a round, somewhat level area, albeit a charred one.

Yes, that's why I put "pits" in quotations. the features in question are raised mounds and have the right dimensions.
 
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manumuskin

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Jul 20, 2003
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I just got back from finding five tar Kilns along route 49 and I found four more along Berrymans Branch.The first one I could not find so I took a shovel sample at the coord and found pure white sand below the humus.I then went to the second and found that one and everyone after that.I took shovel samples and just below the rooyts found black grimy soil with charcoal chunks all in it.I went back and looked for the first one on the way back and found it now that I knew what to look for.My coord guess was fifty ft off on that one,all others were spot on.I have videos of several of them. Can MP4 files be posted right on here or do I have to upload them to youtube and link to them ? First I have to get them off my phone once Mommas done charging hers and gives me the cord.
 

Boyd

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Jul 31, 2004
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Sorry Al, you need to get an account at YouTube, Vimeo or another video sharing site (Guy uses YouTube, I prefer Vimeo). Video uploads aren't allowed, that would fill up Ben's disk too fast. :)

Very cool that you were able to find all those sites so easily! :cool:
 

manumuskin

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I have the youtube account but am going to have to figure it out again. Might not get em up til tomorrow.I figured that would put a whammy on Bens space. Not even sure oif you can tell what I"m filming.have to get them on computer and then I can see how they really look.Sunny out today and shadows camouflage the shallow pits and might not show up good on the videos.
 
Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
I just got back from finding five tar Kilns along route 49 and I found four more along Berrymans Branch.The first one I could not find so I took a shovel sample at the coord and found pure white sand below the humus.I then went to the second and found that one and everyone after that.I took shovel samples and just below the rooyts found black grimy soil with charcoal chunks all in it.I went back and looked for the first one on the way back and found it now that I knew what to look for.My coord guess was fifty ft off on that one,all others were spot on.I have videos of several of them. Can MP4 files be posted right on here or do I have to upload them to youtube and link to them ? First I have to get them off my phone once Mommas done charging hers and gives me the cord.
How do you know it was a tar kiln and not merely a charcoal mound? Any clay?
 

GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
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Little Egg Harbor
Yes, and throughout the image. I've found similar areas elsewhere that show the same thing. Not to make an argument from incredulity, but I'm aware of no geologic process in the Pines that would have produced these features. They are the right dimensions for charcoal pits and the equidistant spacing makes sense as each "pit" would have an area of trees unto itself. This was an extensive and systematic operation.

Isn't than an awfully large amount of mounds to be remaining so long after the charcoal was burned? What is the date of these lidar images? The few photos I've seen of pits in the process of having the finished charcoal being removed did not indicate much of a mound remaining when done.
 
Apr 6, 2004
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Galloway
Isn't than an awfully large amount of mounds to be remaining so long after the charcoal was burned? What is the date of these lidar images? The few photos I've seen of pits in the process of having the finished charcoal being removed did not indicate much of a mound remaining when done.
Hmmm. Good point. Boyd, any idea how high these mounds might be?
 

Teegate

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Some charcoal pits do have a ring around them. That would show up.


ring.jpg
 
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GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
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Little Egg Harbor
I'm not saying they can't be charcoal pits. I'm rarely 100% sure of anything. But if that many pits are still evident in 2019, I gotta visit this site! :)
 

manumuskin

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Jul 20, 2003
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How do you know it was a tar kiln and not merely a charcoal mound? Any clay?
it was a ring of dirt about two ft high and 20 ft across with the depression in center actually being about ground level,a couple of the buttons were slightly depressed in center but some appeared to be rings on flat ground.When i dug in center there was about six inches of humus and then immediately black grimy decayed charcoal with lumps of intact charcoal in it.Now i would assume a charcoal site would have charcoal from oak/hickory which is what i think they used for charcoal for furnaces??? A tar pit would have pine charcoal.You would have to have it analyzed I imagine to tell the difference.Does anyone know what wood for sure as used to make charcoal for a furnace? There was a very old wagon road going through the area and several of the pits were right next to it.A very old road by the looks of it.An almost unused trail now. Oh and there was no clay.very fine sugar sand outside the pits,charcoal in them but I didn't go deep,maybe a foot.
 
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