During the conservation treatment and cleaning of what appeared to be just another “bar” of iron, markings were discovered in the surfaces indicating that the objects were tools — files to be precise.
Tools used to make tools are particularly important to our understanding of past artisan and craft activity. There were very few craft specialists in the early Maryland colony. Most individuals were involved in the production of the staple cash crop tobacco. One of the exceptions to this generalization were blacksmiths. The repair and maintenance of iron tools and equipment required a specialist with special tools. This small, triangular file would have been used by a blacksmith in finishing detail work.