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Side view of antique burl-wood bowl

Burl wood, prized for centuries for its interesting grain, comes from an abnormal growth, like a tumor, on a tree, such as this snow-capped burl photographed by Joan Truesdell in Peterborough.

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Snow-capped burl in Peterborough

The antique burl-wood bowl (below), from the collection of the Monadnock Center for History and Culture in Peterborough, is believed to date at least to the 1700s, although family lore dates the bowl to 1500s Scotland. According to information provided by the museum, Janet and John Moore brought the bowl — nearly 20 inches in diameter — from Northern Ireland to Londonderry, N.H., in 1724. Passed down through generations of the same family, the bowl was donated to the museum in 1979.

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Antique burl-wood bowl