Thanks for sharing this with us. I have the impression that experimental
archaeology has had a higher profile in the past decade but before then
practically non-existant. As for Iron Smelting that does seem to have
a lot of interest lately in Britain - so it does perhaps depend where you
how well it is publicized among archaeologists and academia.
On 10/21/04 7:55 PM James Brothers writes:
>I don't have all of the data. But The Farmers Museum in Cooperstown, NY
>held a conference Entitled "Pre-Industrial Iron" 9-11OCT. Three
>experimental bloomeries were operated. Lee Sauder and Skip Williams of
>Lexington, VA did what they are refering to as an electro-Roman
>bloomery. Short shaft, but usinga blower rather than bellows. I believe
>they produced a 40lb bloom. Michael McCarthy of the Farmers Museum ran
>a small Japanes Tatara and made 20+lbs of iron and steel. Darrell
>Markewitz ran a Norse style bloomery and produced a 6lb bloom. The
>blooms were consolidated and then forged. I was not able to stay and
>see what was made. There is a move to make this an annual event. sort
>of a Smelt in. I was disappointed at the lack of support by academia.
>MIT (who is going to do detailed metallographic analysis of the blooms
>and slag) was represented and there were a couple of archaeologists and
>archaeometallurgists. but most of teh attendees were practicing smiths.
> There were also talks/papers on colonial iron manufacture, Viking
>iron, native copper, and the Spanish gothic and rennaisance.