Clay tobacco pipes were an important part of everyday London life from the end of the 16th century onwards, surviving in considerable quantities from archaeological excavations, and commonly found on the foreshore. Many pipe makers marked their products with their personal initials or symbols, some of which can be identified with documented individuals working in London.

This database is part of a major project being undertaken by MOLA to create a physical and digital archive of clay pipe makers’ marks from London excavations, including both pipes made in the capital and imported from further afield. The first stage of this project focuses on stamped makers’ marks dating to between c 1580 and 1710.

You can search the Museum of London clay pipe collections on their website.

Artefact Factsheet

For more information on identifying and dating clay pipes found on site, this useful guide has been produced by Urban Archaeology and reproduced with their permission.

Check out our clay pipe factsheet.

Thames Discovery Programme Greater London