of a Victorian (1870) catalogue of this most important manufacturer
of every imaginable forged tool, implement, and object: bill hooks,
axes, adzes, hoes, hammers, chisels, anchors, eel spears, locomotive
firing shovels, horseshoes and many more. The names of some of the
tools indicate the world-wide customers the firm had: Russian miners
hammers, Spanish bowl adzes, Australian half-bright chipping hoe,
New Zealand sinking pick, Bechuana grubbing hoes, Peruvian hedge
bills, to name a few.
plates provide patterns for hundreds of bill hooks for which the
company was well known, some 79 axes, 46 adzes, 120 hammers, 80
hoes, 135 shovel patterns, and thousands of other objects. An introduction
by Richard Filmer gives a historical survey of the firm and goes
into considerable descriptive detail about various items shown in
the catalogue. The history of this forge and company is fascinating.
When Edward Elwell took lease of Wednesbury Forge in 1817 (pictured
in color on the front cover), the business prospered and expanded
from edge tools into spade and shovel production. Although a new
factory was built in the 1950s, the tradition of hand-forged tools
still continues and Wednesbury Forge is busier then ever today!
Hundreds of B&W images and tools