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  #1  
Old 01-13-2015, 01:14 PM
JDominiqueIII JDominiqueIII is offline
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Default P & B Dutch Oven

Trying to identify the age and value, if any of this camp oven. It has gate marks on the underside of the lid, the bottom of the oven and also down one side of the oven. I will try to restore this to beauty. What is the best method: lye, vinegar or electrolysis or a combination thereof? Can anyone date this piece? there is severe rust on the ring of the lid. Scale with some mass had fallen off and was able to be removed with a fingernail. Pot may be beyond actual use but I would like to season it if for nothing else...preservation.

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  #2  
Old 01-13-2015, 01:30 PM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

Phillips & Buttorff Mfg. Co. Nashville, TN. Operated ~ 1858 to mid-1900s. Electrolysis would be easier (if you had a set up), but vinegar/water for rust will work. Doesn't look like all that much for lye to work on, but if you were able to do electro, it would take care of it all, and in fairly short order.
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Old 01-14-2015, 02:05 AM
RickC RickC is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

No matter how much rust it HAD before you cleaned it, it will cook a mean pot of chili after it's cleaned.


Please post photos after you get it cleaned up.
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Old 01-14-2015, 10:27 AM
JDominiqueIII JDominiqueIII is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

I will post pictures after it is cleaned. I am new to the electrolysis process. Is galvanized sheet steel acceptable as a sacrificial anode or do I need raw steel?
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Old 01-14-2015, 12:10 PM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

It will work. You will see various debates over different metals being used as sacrificial anodes, and what hazards they might present. Since the process of electrolysis also erodes the sacrificial anode, some elements of it may be present in the electrolyte afterwards and/or loosely adhered to the piece being cleaned, but should not present a problem if the piece is scrubbed and rinsed thoroughly. I would not, however, dispose of the electrolyte by watering my vegetable garden or dumping it nearby.
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  #6  
Old 01-15-2015, 11:40 AM
JDominiqueIII JDominiqueIII is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

Doug,
Is there anyway to narrow the estimated date of mfg? You stated that P&B operated ~1858- mid 1900s. The only date I can find stated that the building in Tenn. was torn down in 1960.
Are there specific names for the "ear" shapes?
Why is there a groove in the loops...were these cast open and then closed later? I am not a serious collector, but I do cherish my cast iron pans and dutch ovens. I sure would like to know as much as I can about this pot. If there are any other sources libraries that may help please let me know. Thank you.
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:52 AM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

The curved parts of the bail ears and also the lid handle were formed by retractable parts on the patterns which allowed them to be removed without disturbing the sand surrounding those parts. I would guess this piece was made in the earlier part of that date range.
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Old 01-16-2015, 08:39 PM
BryanB BryanB is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

That is one nice "pig ear" dutch oven. Doug is spot on with the maker and the age. I would like to see the bottom to place a closer date. If the three legs are round it would fall into a later date. If the legs are shaped like the letter D with the flat of the D facing inward the date is earlier. The lid is the early pattern due to the join mark in the middle of the handle. Assuming the lid is the mate to the pot (is there any slop, movement between the lid and pot, major movement) it will place prior to the 1900"s. I would like to see the gatemark on the pot. The size of the gate mark matters in shotgun dating these sweet old fireplace cooking utensils.
It will make a mean pot roast, or as stated, chili. A 100 years + - later.

A Benjamin Franklin plus shipping as is.??
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  #9  
Old 01-17-2015, 11:45 AM
JDominiqueIII JDominiqueIII is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

Bryan,
I greatly appreciate the offer and the info, but for now I think we are keeping the pot. I am preparing an electrolysis process to clean the pot. In response to your questions I have confirmed D shaped legs with a slight curvature. Since the pot was from an elderly family member, I can only assume it is a match set. I have included photos of the gate marks on the bottom and notice two depressions at the pot's edge (you can see one in the photo). Additionally, the photo of the inside shows a gate mark inside the pot. My 70+ year old Mom-in-law stated the pot is either from her deceased husband's parents or their parents. Thanks in advance.
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  #10  
Old 01-17-2015, 08:42 PM
BryanB BryanB is offline
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Default Re: P & B Dutch Oven

Thanks for the pictures. The thin gate and the inward curved legs would place your dutch oven toward the late 1800's. Again this is a shotgun date. As to the mark on the side, I think it is a result of a mould patch or a defect. Not a gate entry scar. As these moulds were reused, the fine sand was chipped away and the foundry pourer wound file away the jagged sand. The result was a bigger mound around the gate. Sorry I can't tell you the year this was made. I bought my first spider dutch oven twenty-two years ago. I have researched this topic for ten plus years. P & B (Nashville) also had a foundry in Birmingham, Alabama that closed during the Great Depression years. They made ornate rough iron casting like iron fencing, decorative iron. (What we call pig iron).
The Nashville foundry became a general order foundry after electricity replaced cast iron cook stoves. Stuff like cast iron anchor stars, that still can be seen on some older brick urban structures, to drainage gate filters along side of the first pot World War II sidewalks.

Long story short, you have a nice "pig eared" dutch oven that has evidence that places it around the 1890's or earlier. That being said, this is an educated guess. Some foundries used these moulds into the early 1930's, the wood fired cook stove was the death of these tri pod dutch ovens.

I like any Tennessee ( and some Alabama) cast iron.
Thanks for the pictures.
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