Contact Period: Place of Exchange

Two worlds met and exchanged here. The First Nations adopted guns, glass beads and metal imple- ments made by the Europeans, using them as such or recycling them for other purposes. For instance, these tinkling cones made from worn-out copper cooking pots.

Meanwhile, the newcomers learned about tobacco from the natives and introduced it back in Europe in the 16th century. Europeans developed a phenomenal appetite for tobacco, and the smoking habit led them to develop a brand new type of pipe.

These mass-produced pipes were made in a single piece. Their long stems were fragile and brittle, as evident from the incomplete examples shown below. Manufactured in Holland, England and Scotland in the 17th century, pipes of this sort were distributed in Europe and America. Their bowls differ from those with removable stems seen at the back of this display.

1. Cooking pot

Copper. Large. The rolled rim indicates French manufacture. Intact pots are rare. Archaeological collection, Ministère de la Culture et des Communications du Québec IQU2150-88

2. Tinkling cones (2)

Copper alloy, 17th century. Tinkling cones are conical or cylindrical tips or tags that were fixed to lace ends, ornamental braid, clothing fringe or a lock of hair. They were often cut from worn-out metal items such as cooking pots. Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-103, AR-2000-104

3. Pistol grip or knife handle decoration

Brass, 17th century. Chased.

Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-109

4. Knife blade

Wrought iron, 17th century. Short, straight blade with rat-tail tang*.

*Tang: the end of a knife blade that extends into the handle. Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-092

5. Hinge

Wrought iron, 17th century.

Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-093

6. Flintlock rie hammer

Wrought iron, 17th or 18th century. From a French firearm, probably a Tulle hunting rifle. The hammer held a flint. When the trigger was pulled, the flint struck the metal frizzen, creating sparks that ignited the powder. Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-107

7. Gunints (3)

Flint, 17th century. Flake knapped from a flint core, probably from France. AR-2000-068, AR-2000-257, AR-2000-259

8. Gunint chips (ring debris) (6)

Flint, 17th century. AR-2000-350, AR-2000-351, AR-2000-352, AR-2000-431, AR-2000-432, AR-2000-433

9. Pistol barrel

Steel. The crooked shape and clumsy soldering suggest that this was a practice piece made by an apprentice. Although incomplete, it illustrates the barrel-making technique used during the French Regime. AR-2000-073

10. Pins (29)

Tin-plated brass, 17th century. Prior to 1824, pins were made in two parts. The head was shaped from heated wire rolled into a ball and then fixed to the end of the shank. AR-2000-368-1.29

11. Beads (5)

17th century.

Opaque black glass (2), 1670-1680.

Beads of this sort have been found on Iroquois sites dating to the early 17th century. AR-2000-061-1.2 

Black opaque glass, tubular. AR-2000-369

Violet shell. AR-2000-371 

White opaque glass. AR-2000-154

12 Spherical button

Pewter, 17th century. Military uniform button. Button materials varied with military rank. Restored by the Centre de conservation du Québec AR-2000-043

13 Rosary beads (2)

Bone, 17th century. AR-2000-070, AR-2000-370

14 to 16 Pipe bowls (3)

Fine white baked clay.

14. England or Scotland, 17th century (before 1680). AR-2000-058

15. Holland, 17th century (before 1680). Stem, oval heel and lower base of bowl. Decorated with the letters “IS” surmounted by a crown. AR-2000-063

16. France, 18th century (1720-1760). Part of bowl and round heel. Decorated with the letters “GD” surmounted by a crown. AR-1999-027