Cranberry scoops were introduced in the 1850's as an aid in the manual picking of cranberries. The first cranberry scoops were wooden baskets with comb-like wooden teeth that would pull the berries off the vines into the basket. The tool at Smith’s Tavern is a rectangular wooden box with a wide wooden handle at its center. The open end has wooden guides on the side and fifteen metal tines across.
Cranberries do not grow in water; they grow on vines in beds that have layers of sand, peat, gravel and clay. Initially, harvesting was done by hand and the scoop helped speed up the process, with the tines separating the berries from the vines with the berries collected in the box.