Standardized measurements an essential part of farm operation
An early zigzag-style folding rule made by Keuffel & Esser Co., New York.
A large steel carpenter’s square with legs 12 inches and 24 inches long. It was used to measure length and mark 90-degree-angle cuts.
A #1296 24-inch Defiance plumb and level by Stanley. The Defiance line, created specifically for the farm and home market, was produced from the 1930s through 1953.
The original Farrand flexible ridged tape measure went into production in about 1926.
Gas gauge rule used to measure the contents of a gas tank on a car or tractor.
Seven-foot tape promoting Coburn feeds, used to measure height of ponies and horses (in hands) and calculate weights. The tape, which has a 1961 copyright date, measures up to 20 hands and 1,321 pounds.
A Stanley #17 brass rule used for smithing in the 1890s. Measuring devices used near the blacksmith’s forge were typically made of metal.
Folding carpenter’s rules of the type in general use from the 1850s through the early 1900s. Left to right: #36 Stanley 6-inch, #69 Stanley 1-foot, #68 Stanley 2-foot, #66-1/2 Stanley 3-foot and #94 Stanley 4-foot. All are folded for carrying. Note the difference in joints: The first is square, the next two are round and the last two are two different styles of each.
A 4-rod-long surveyor’s chain with brass markers, strung to carry.
Wantage rod used to measure volume in containers of liquid.
In the late 1950s-’60s, many companies used plastic or cloth advertising promotion tapes. Directions for its use were printed on the tape. Here, a Purina weight estimation tape for calves, heifers and cows.
Two tape measures out of the mid-1930s: a Stanley #1268 round tape measure and a Master #306 D-case tape measure. Both are six feet in length.
The end of a 3-foot grain measure yardstick.
This 9-foot tape is used to measure and calculate the yield, in bushels, of a stand of corn. Produced for New Holland, it carries a 1959 copyright.
A small square capable of marking both 90- and 45-degree angles.
A 4-foot yardstick from Farmers Grain Fuel and Supply Co., Macomb, Ill.
Two views of a 55-gallon oil barrel measure from the 1950s.
A Stanley #106 6-foot zigzag-style rule in white.
A July 24, 1900 patent date is visible on the right side of this Keuffel & Esser rule.
A Stanley #70 2-foot rule from 1853-54, an early standard.