Meaning: any of various alloys of tin with small amounts of other metals (especially lead)
A mixture of very little tin, or pewter (which is lead and tin), with lead, hardens it: we read of sportsmen melting up their spoons and dishes for this purpose.
If the shot turns out to be lens-shaped, there has been too much arsenic; if hollow, flattened, or tailed, there has been too little. Pewter or tin is bad, as it makes tailed shot.
It was the work of a few minutes to remove the bacon from beneath the big pewter cover and substitute the kitten, to put a tablespoonful of salt into the coffee, and to put a two-days'-old paper in place of that morning's.
On one of the shelves of an old dresser, in company with chipped sauce-boats, pewter jugs, cheese-graters, and paid bills, rested a worn and ragged Bible, on whose front page was the record, in faded ink, of a baptism dated ninety-four years ago.
A few three-legged stools; a bedstead made of poles stuck between the logs in the angle of the cabin, the outside corner supported by a crotched stick driven into the ground; the table, a huge hewed log standing on four legs; a pot, kettle, and skillet, and a few tin and pewter dishes were all the furniture.