Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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New Process Extracts Ancient Tobacco Residues

Monday, March 04, 2013

DAVIS, CALIFORNIA—Hunter gatherers smoked tobacco 1,000 years ago in the Pacific Northwest, according to a study led by Shannon Tushingham of the University of California. She and the other researchers developed a way to test organic residues in pipes without damaging them. “We believe Native American use of tobacco and other psychoactive plants is quite ancient. The methods we developed provide an important breakthrough which can be applied on even older pipes throughout the ancient Americas,” she explained.