The earliest nails probably were found in the Middle East around 5,000 B.C. Nails were all handmade until the late 1600s when a nail-making machine was invented. Iron nails of all sizes were made by Roman blacksmiths in their workshops. Nails were made by smelting (producing a metal from its ore by chemical extraction) the iron ore and forming the nails by hand, producing a square tapered nail with a large head, like this particular nail. Nails were used in many ways, such as for building and roofing, depending on the size. This iron nail possibly dates from over 2,000 years ago.
The Children's Museum of Indianapolis
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Rome -- Civilization -- To 146 B.C.
Nails and spikes
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