In 1859, the German-American Jacob Kuechler (1823–1893) used crossdating to examine oaks (Quercus stellata) in order to study the record of climate in western Texas.During the first half of the 20th century, the astronomer A. Douglass founded the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona.European chronologies derived from wooden structures initially found it difficult to bridge the gap in the 14th century when there was a building hiatus, which coincided with the Black Death, Given a sample of wood, the variation of the tree-ring growths provides not only a match by year, it can also match location because the climate across a continent is not consistent.This makes it possible to determine the source of ships as well as smaller artifacts made from wood but which were transported long distances, such as panels for paintings and ship timbers.For instance, the bristlecone pine is exceptionally long-lived and slow growing, and has been used extensively for chronologies; still-living and dead specimens of this species provide tree-ring patterns going back thousands of years, in some regions more than 10,000 years. P., the radiocarbon dates are calibrated against dendrochronological dates.Currently, the maximum span for fully anchored chronology is a little over 11,000 years B. In 2004 a new radiocarbon calibration curve, INTCAL04, was internationally ratified to provide calibrated dates back to 26,000 B. Dendrochronology practice faces many obstacles, including the existence of species of ants that inhabit trees and extend their galleries into the wood, thus destroying ring structure.
The rings are more visible in temperate zones, where the seasons differ more markedly.
It is also used in radiocarbon dating to calibrate radiocarbon ages.