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All our axes don't live in Texas, they live in Florida

We keep finding axes, sledgehammers, and more axes. No reason to think any of these are particularly old, but who can tell at a glance? We thought it would be useful to show pictures of axes and sledges of known vintage to serve as a starting point.


PLEASE SEND US PICTURES OF YOUR AXES OF KNOWN YEAR!!


How would you date an axe? Very carefully



Some thumbrules:


- If it says "wear safety glasses" it's 1976 or later

In 1976, ANSI and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration established a joint coordinating committee for private-public sector voluntary standards activities that affect safety and health in the workplace.


- If you should happen to find a Craftsman there is a discussion of stamp ages here.


- There are A LOT of different kinds of axes. Your standard hardware-store axe is usually a felling axe. There seems to be a sort of fashion world in axes where those are often of similar shape in a particular decade, the named shapes below notwithstanding.


This website discusses some types as well as the anatomy of an axe (know what the poll is?).


It should come as no surprise that there are entire books on this topic. We do not pretend to be experts here at HCNF. Please reference wisely.


There are a ton of guidance websites out there, but for the most part their guidance can be boiled down to "find the manufacturer's mark and look it up."


Image credit: https://yellowoodesign.com/

Image credit: https://yellowoodesign.com/




Image credit: https://www.timbergadgets.com/



image credit redditer the_walking_guy2


For the photos below, the date listed is the NEWEST that the axe could be. We can't guarantee that the fella chopping wood in the 1950s isn't using an axe from the 1890s!




2000s

2006 Craftsman




1960s


Boy Scout hatchet 1960s



1950s


Mid 1950s, date verified by original purchaser







Craftsman Brand Axe, early 1950s. This is around the time Craftsman started using the double-line pattern on its stamps.



Lumberjack with his axe, 1950s



Boy scout hatchet 1950s



1950s USA TRUE TEMPER FLINT EDGE KELLY WORKS 4 Lb Axe Head SINGLE BIT






1940s


1940s axe for sale on the interwebs




1940s Wards Special axe




1945 US Army Hatchett















1930s


1937 WARREN AXE & TOOL COMPANY CATALOG AXES




3.2 Pound Mann "KnotKlipper" Western Double-Bit 1930s - early 40s



Man cutting wood 1930s





























1935 double bit, Put's Farm, Orange, NJ










1934 Boxing heavyweight champ Primo Carnera chopping wood




1920s





1927 Illustration of the dangers of chopping wood - one man steadies the wood with his foot while the other, heedless, blindly gathers pieces. Wisconsin.





You can find the entire 1925 Kelly-TrueTemper Catalog here



Woodcutter, 1920s











1910s


1916 Catalog page




1913 Log Cabin Chopper









Henry Ford chopping wood 1916 (it was de rigueur then to make sure you were seen in photos doing "manly" outdoor things so nobody would think you were a soft desk driver. Many photos of presidents likewise).








1903 catalog page





1800s


1876 "Child chopping wood" from a 1970s print of a vintage StereoView card





1800s axe dug and restored


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