anvil Identification

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The maker’s mark is faint and dinged up. It looks to me like a left - right arrow( rectangular box with arrowhead at both ends) with "STILETTO" stamped within. I could be way off and stand to be corrected. The anvil is 25 inches long and 10.3 inches tall. The .5” thick table is 3.8” wide and is in good shape with a 1” hardy hole and a .5” pritchel hole. The feet provide a base of 9” X 10”. The “124” seems right for the weight in pounds when I heft it. It has a loud ring and good rebound. The tip of the horn needs some attention. I waited a long time for this anvil to come my way. I have $45 invested in it. I found it as a garden ornament at an estate sale. It was going to be left behind in the sale of the property. This was a gift from the blacksmithing god.
My previous anvil was a chunk of railway track. I don't plan to part with this anvil and would appreciate any information about it and also any comments that you might have.

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WOW! You certainly did get the blessings of God fall on you to get a nice anvil like that for $45. I'm sure Thomas can tell you what kind it is. You should get much forging joy out of that anvil. One bit of advice, don't use an abrasive disk on the anvil to clean it, use a wire brush to get rid of the rust. The abrasive disk removes too much material.

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That depression in the base makes me think it might be a Trenton. However, they didn't usually stamp the weights on the side like that. Is there anything stamped on the front of the feet?

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I'd go with Trenton too stamped in a diamond <> though sometimes it's stamped Trexon.

If so a good brand and made in Columbus OH. Cherish it!

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Yes, sometimes fortune smiles on our persuits.
Thanks for the cleaning advice. I am trying to ding the burrs around the table and horn back where the metal came from instead of grinding it off. Someplaces it works and some places not.

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IMGP0925.jpg
Well now! There are some numbers stamped on the front feet. 21569.
I doubt that the maker's mark is Trenton or Trexon since the S at the beginning and the O at the end are clear enough to read and the logo is definately a left - rifgt arrow. Maybe it's real oddball? I will try to get a better photo of the stamp.
I do appreciate my good fortune in locating this anvil and at such a bargain price.
Any more ideas or comments are much appreciated. Thanks guys!

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IMGP0925.jpg
Well now! There are some numbers stamped on the front feet. 21569.
I doubt that the maker's mark is Trenton or Trexon since the S at the beginning and the O at the end are clear enough to read and the logo is definately a left - rifgt arrow. Maybe it's real oddball? I will try to get a better photo of the stamp.
I do appreciate my good fortune in locating this anvil and at such a bargain price.
Any more ideas or comments are much appreciated. Thanks guys!


Sometimes the manufacturers made anvils for hardware stores or distributors and stamped the store's name instead of their own. I don't think 'Stilletto' would be the maker, just the store or distributor.

The fact that the weight is on the side and not stamped on the left front foot is a little atypical for Trenton. I'm wondering if it is perhaps an Arm and Hammer? They also used cast steel bases with that depression like Trentons, but they usually stamped their weights on the side like yours. One thing that is different from regular Arm and Hammers is the underside of the heel seems to be finished quite nicely whereas 'normal' Arm and Hammers had a rougher underside of the heel from the fullering process in drawing the heel.

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Thanks Sask Mark. That gives me some more things to check on for my research, but right now I'm going to build some hardies. Thanks.

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Or, it seems you might have an oddball. Just send it to me as you don't want to have anything to do with oddballs, do you? ;)

Edit-I just did some more reading in my copy of Anvils in America and your anvil does not appear to be a Trenton. If the anvil was a Trenton, the serial number 21569 would indicate a year of manufacture of roughly 1901. Early Trentons had an hourglass depression, and did not start adopting the oval depression until 1907 with the changeover complete in about 1910.

If the Anvil is an Arm and Hammer, the serial number would indicated a year of manufacture of 1913-1914. This year would fit into the oval depression scheme on the cast steel bases as seen on your anvil.

Mr. Postman also states that some Swedish anvils had the oval depression as well, but yours appears to be forged, not cast, so I'm going to guess that it is an Arm and Hammer.

As for the name stamped on the side, it is not listed in anvils in America. I understand that there is a new edition in the works. Perhaps it will show up in the new edition if Mr. Postman has uncovered any other examples. You might want to contact him and let him know you have an example and see what he says as he is far more of an authority than I am.

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There were also imported trentons. Bocker(spl) worked with/for trenton. Have to dig out AIA to check. It seems that back in the day you could have a major manufacture put your name on them if ya ordered enough. Looks like a great one.
Ken

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Arm & Hammer and Trenton both were in Columbus OH, (You can still see the remains of the old grinding wheels in the river below where one of their factories was) and so seemed to have used the same bases at times (as well as workers going from one to the other).

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Arm & Hammer and Trenton both were in Columbus OH, (You can still see the remains of the old grinding wheels in the river below where one of their factories was) and so seemed to have used the same bases at times (as well as workers going from one to the other).


Hey Thomas - Do you by any chance know where that factory was located? Is there anything left of it? I'd like to check it out sometime. If there's anything left It might be cool to get some pictures.

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Yes I do, I've been there several times. After the anvil factory shut down they were an edible oils plant---ran hydrogenation *inside* the city---scary!!! When last I was there they were converting to condos.

I tracked it down as one of the ex-workers said they left a line of anvils on the edge of the drop off to the river when they shut down and I wanted to see if any had fallen down and not retrieved.

I need to dig out a better map google maps doesn't get down to the alleyways I took. It's close to where 670 crosses the river (to the north of it.) I followed the river till I came to the area with the grindstones sticking out of the water---over a dozen of them when I was there about 4' in diameter and 1' thick natural sandstone (and so ruined by the immersion)


AHA! http://www.shortnorth.com/HarrisonPark.html "The factory was originally built in 1883 by Capital City Dairy, makers of “Purity Butterine,” a margarine-butter spread. Since then, Sinclair Oil, Columbus Forge & Iron Company, Stokely-Van Camp, Dresser Industries, Washington Breweries, and finally AC Humko all occupied the site."

Columbus Forge and Iron was the anvil maker!

Looks like if they have done what they say they will it is totally gone and even the river probably ravished as well. I wonder if they found any anvils? Old industrial site way too much iron in the ground/water to uise a metal detector, sigh.

The other factory was near I70 and High street (west of that) on the south side IIRC.

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EUREKA!!!! Gotta love the internet. The Baker & Hamilton Co. of Sacramento ( since 1849) sold the Stiletto line of tools that included forges and just about any tool that you could name. Their catalog was huge! There are lots of vintage Baker & Hamilton / Stiletto tool catalogs around. Anybody got one or know of someone who might have one? The Stiletto trade mark is still in use today and is virtually identical to the mark on my anvil. All that I have been able to find under the trade mark is a line of high end hammers and pry bars for the building construction industry. Google Stiletto Tools if you would like to see this historictrademark. Baker & Hamilton manufactured some of their products, but I don't know yet who made these Stiletto anvils.

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Very cool! It's interesting to see that their logo hasn't really changed since your anvil was made.

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Yes I do, I've been there several times. After the anvil factory shut down they were an edible oils plant---ran hydrogenation *inside* the city---scary!!! When last I was there they were converting to condos.

I tracked it down as one of the ex-workers said they left a line of anvils on the edge of the drop off to the river when they shut down and I wanted to see if any had fallen down and not retrieved.

I need to dig out a better map google maps doesn't get down to the alleyways I took. It's close to where 670 crosses the river (to the north of it.) I followed the river till I came to the area with the grindstones sticking out of the water---over a dozen of them when I was there about 4' in diameter and 1' thick natural sandstone (and so ruined by the immersion)


AHA! http://www.shortnort...rrisonPark.html "The factory was originally built in 1883 by Capital City Dairy, makers of “Purity Butterine,” a margarine-butter spread. Since then, Sinclair Oil, Columbus Forge & Iron Company, Stokely-Van Camp, Dresser Industries, Washington Breweries, and finally AC Humko all occupied the site."

Columbus Forge and Iron was the anvil maker!

Looks like if they have done what they say they will it is totally gone and even the river probably ravished as well. I wonder if they found any anvils? Old industrial site way too much iron in the ground/water to uise a metal detector, sigh.

The other factory was near I70 and High street (west of that) on the south side IIRC.


That's too bad... Would have liked to go take a look - sounds like it's long gone.

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During WWII, while a callow pupil in a Junior High School Metal Shop, I learned a bit of forging and smithing; the seed was planted, and for 70 years I aspired to adopt smithing as a hobby.    

 

In the late 70s my elder brother bought at a ranch auction sale, in Park County MT, a blacksmith shop, including a 110 lb Trenton anvil, a robust Canedy Otto Royal Western Chief blower, forge, swage block, tongs, hammers, punches, hardy tools, coal, coke, hood and flues etc.  

 

On this MT brother's demise I salvaged/hauled the smithy to CA; later to OR.  In short, I never got around to setting up a smithy.   This month, a generation later, I lamented my 83rd birthday.  I clearly realize I will never use any of this stuff.  

 

However, a robust Grandnephew has adopted the trade of Farrier, among the horsey-set of Sonoma County CA. Seasonally he is making a good income - as a rank beginner.  I intend to make this young, ambitious Farrier a gift of all the blacksmith shop - as a token of my approval of his choice of a trade.

 

I need help to    date the manufacture of the Trenton anvil.  Yes, it rings like a bell.   On the front foot the marks are:

 

       a cockeyed or incomplete N; [possibly a lopsided V], followed by a clear 110;

              next a triangle [or an incomplete A] followed by a clear 23214.

 

Help me decrypt the code to a year of manufacture.  

 

Dustbowldan       

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The third scrutiny of the: 

 

     cockeyed or incomplete N; [possibly a lopsided V]

 

                  leads to a third speculation.  

 

The foundry-man,  if drunk, may have rotated the 7-die 170 degrees clockwise.  

 

If in fact a seven it is almost upside down.  That would make the number longer---:723214. 

   

Dustbowldan

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Do you by chance need another nephew???

From AIA: The 110 is the weight and a S/N of 23214 would be 1901 Trenton S/Ns only went as high as 225551 in Jun of 1953, if the 7 is actually a 2 it could be a 1953 manufacture...

Some Trenton S/Ns had an A prefix and I have not read enough of the Trenton section to see if there is a reason, or there were other prefixes. 

 

Hope your Grand nephew appriciates the gift.

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Well, "advanced member", I forgot to mention that the smithy also included a fine old post vise, and a post drill. Now I reckon I better drag the vise uphill to my shop, clean it and learn whether/not it carries any ID?

With the usage this anvil has had, 1953 seems ridiculously impossible, so I'll go for the 1901; a very plausible time for Montana Ranching to be setting up shop..

My grand-nephew must drive some 600 miles to collect his plunder. I will also donate some reference books and catalogs, one a really nice old one from Ducommon Metals.

I also scored, at the same source, a noble set of fireplace andirons; the bold forged standards each have, pendant on the front face, an ovate "ring"; the rings are hinged/hang from the top of the standard. Each was forged from a section of large diameter [7/8"-1"] steel rope or cable. I cannot document that the andirons were forged at 'my' smithy, for deceased brother loved ranch auctions, loved old tools, and seldom missed an auction. The andirons may have come from some other ranch.

I hope to be able to attach photos soon, but cannot now.
--------------
A curious tale relates to my trip -- CA to MT to CA -- to pick up the smithy.

On the Northbound leg [Oct 1990] I spent a few days scouting the Okanagan River Valley from the Columbia River to the Canadian Boundary. I was delighted to find there, a Korean farmer-cum-nurseryman raising bare-root 'Asian-Pear' trees, and "Paechu", or Chinese Cabbage. That Korean guy marketed his cabbages to the Spokane/Seattle Asian produce stores. Great entrepreneur, who knew how to cater to a 'niche' market.

As my brothers and I had served in Korea, we were, naturally, addicted to that wonderful Korean Garlic/Hot-Chilies/Cabbage pickle called "Kim Chee". Our wives failed to share our enjoyment; For sixty years they thought Kim Chee stinks!! How bourgeois!!

On departing "the Okanagan" for Park County MT, my pickup was laden with a dozen bushels of freshly gleaned apples and a dozen enormous, sweet Chinese Cabbages! God, what a superb [free] score!

In MT my brother and I processed and bottled 6-10 gallons of Kim Chee, We refrigerated it in one gallon screw-top jars. In loading my plunder in my 'Freedom' pickup for the long drive home, I cushioned and nestled several gallons of Kimchee atop the hardware of the smithy.

On my southboud leg I planned to visit an old sawmill 'blade-filer', in that sawmill-town, just south of Redding (Anderson CA). At the I-5 exit I crossed a RR grade crossing -- next to a Propane distirbutor. On parking to use a payphone, I smelled pungency; indeed it was a stink! I knew it was easily explained as gas leakage --- from the intentionally 'odorized' gas-plant next door.

Concluding my visit, I drove to my next stop, some 200 miles distant. Smelling the stinky gas-odor anew, I thought something amiss? I examined my cargo, and discovered that a gallon of Kim Chee had shattered three hours earlier, back at the RR crossing. Damitall! Kimchee costs 5-8 dollars per pint! I reckoned I had lost about 65 bucks worth of first rate Korean delicacy! Rats!

Dustbowl Dan

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Not sure how I got to be "advanced" ???

I pulled into Pusan in the '80s and at some point tried the Kim Chee, I don't remember it killing me so it must have been OK. I would try to sample as much of the local food as I could stomach when I pulled into a country, most was pretty good, a few things well...the locals can keep and enjoy.

 

Post vises are really great tools but they are also a strange tool, the makers didn't seem to mark them as much as other tools. I have 3 that I cannot find a makers name on, some have a weight or a year but no tool maker that I can find.

Some of the members here have much more info on who made a vise by the design or particular style of some feature. I believe Frank Turley has some good insight on the various makers differences/designs. 

The markings I have found on my vises have been located on the front jaw, so that is a good place to start wire wheeling.

 

As I said, I hope your Grand Nephew really enjoys the equipment and appriciates the family connection, maybe the smell of Kim Chee still lingers...

 

Be good

 

Mark  

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