My Kingdom for a Shovel…

This reported in the Journal Star of Lincoln, Nebraska…

Rene Botts [an archaeologist with the Nebraska State Historical Society] wants your shovel–but only if it’s a True Temper No. 2, stamped with the words “light weight” and “heat treated” on the shovel socket. If you’re willing to sell yours for science, e-mail her at or call her office number at (402) 471-4766.

In some circles, these shovels are as prized as our Marshalltown trowels…Now that they are no longer manufactured (like our beloved Pentax K-1000 series cameras which I now have to buy on EBay), some archaeologists seem to go to great lengths to get them…like getting a newspaper to do a story on the subject.

Those of the “True Temper” cult like to get a No. 2 shovel (which is a slightly rounded spade) and sharpen a “half-moon” out of the tip (see the picture)…I personally like the RazorBack shovel (the industry’s strongest shovel made by Union Tools)… my shovel philosophy is to use a sharpened flat shovel for test units and a rounded spade for shovel tests….

“Square shovels for square holes and round shovels for round holes”…its that simple.

BTW: I’m also fond of the “rice shovel” (a flattened spade with three holes in the blade) for digging in sticky delta soils.

Read the entire Journal Star story here.
Check out the “We Need Shovels” section of the Nebraska State Historical Society website:

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Categories: archeology


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