What were tally sticks used for?

What were tally sticks used for?

Tally sticks were used by officials of the Exchequer as physical proof of payments to the king, functioning in the same way as a modern receipt.

How do Heighty sticks work?

Tally sticks were used to pay wages to workers and taxes to the state. People used them to buy and sell items, as if they were coins. They were, after all, an IOU; a pledge by whoever issued the stock to pay gold to whoever happened to possess it.

What wood is used for the stick in the tally stick?

In fact, in 1834, the British government decided to destroy 600 years of precious monetary artefacts. It was a decision that was to have unfortunate consequences in more ways than one. The artefacts in question were humble sticks of willow, about eight inches (20cm) long, called Exchequer tallies.

What are notch sticks?

The Notched Stick generally consists of a notched stick made of wood on which a propeller loosely fitting a nail and free to spin, is fixed; upon moving a dowel back and forth across the notches, the propeller rotates (see Fig 1).

Which country use tally sticks?

Along the Danube and in Switzerland the tally was still used in the 20th century in rural economies. The most prominent and best recorded use of the split tally stick or “nick-stick” being used as a form of currency was when Henry I introduced the tally stick system in medieval England in around 1100.

Why was willow wood used for Creditsticks?

Willow was one of the most common species used for tally sticks due to its sturdiness and distinctive grain patterns. The specific grain in willow increased the trustworthiness of tally sticks because it was almost impossible to falsify the unique pattern, shape, and size of any individual stick.

What is a lumber tally?

Gross tally, also sometimes called green tally, is the volume of wood in board feet delivered to the mill after it is cut. This lumber hasn’t been dried yet and has a high amount of moisture in it. When lumber dries, water is removed from the wood resulting in a smaller overall volume of wood.

How do you make hardwood tally lumber?

How to Block Tally Lumber

  1. Measure the width of the lumber unit in inches.
  2. Reduce the width by the approximate distance of gaps between boards.
  3. Measure the average length of the unit in feet.
  4. Measure the thickness to determine the board count (thickness in quarters, as described above).

Is thought to be a Paleolithic tally sick?

Possible palaeolithic tally sticks Dated to the Aurignacian, approximately 30,000 years ago, the bone is marked with 55 marks which some believe to be tally marks. The Ishango bone is a bone tool, dated to the Upper Palaeolithic era, around 18,000 to 20,000 BC.

What is a single tally stick?

The single tally stick was an elongated piece of bone, ivory, wood, or stone which is marked with a system of notches (see: Tally marks ). The single tally stick serves predominantly mnemonic purposes. Related to the single tally concept are messenger sticks (e.g., Inuit tribes), the knotted cords, khipus or quipus, as used by the Inca.

When did they stop using tallies in the UK?

When the accounts were audited, the two pieces were fitted together to see if they would ‘tally’. Exchequer officials continued to use tallies until 1826, with very large tally sticks created to record huge sums of money. It was the burning of unwanted tally sticks in 1834 that caused the fire that destroyed the old Houses of Parliament.

What was the purpose of tallying?

One tally was a payment relating to royal forest in the counties. Another cleared some of his outstanding debts to the king. Tally sticks were used by accountants and by officials of the Exchequer who managed the revenue of the Crown. They were a physical proof of payments made into the Treasury.

Were tally sticks widely traded in the past?

We don’t have a good sense of whether tally sticks were in fact widely traded or not, for reasons that will become clear. But we know that similar debts were, some surprisingly recently.