Farm Collector


The genius of pioneer inventors can confound
us. Countless contraptions that revolutionized farming in the 19th
and early 20th centuries have become contemporary curiosities, or
even mysteries. Here are four sent in by readers. Do you know what
they are?


Answers to this month’s items will appear in the September


A. This item was probably hand-made for a
specific and unknown purpose. Photo submitted by James Moloney,
Palos Hills, Ill.

B. Land anchor used for various purposes, such
as guying telephone and other poles, smokestacks, etc., as
identified by James H. Allison, Lenoir City, Tenn. “This item is
part of an anchoring system developed by the A.B. Chance Co.,” he
explains. “The other part would be a rod with a pointed ball on one
end and an eye for connecting a wire or cable to the other end.
You’d dig a posthole, preferably slanted away from the direction of
strain. The pointed rod was driven into the hole, angled so it
intercepted the posthole at the desired depth, and the keyhole of
the anchor was inserted onto the rod and dropped down so the ball
on the end of the rod was secure from backing out. Backfill the
hole; job completed. Some interesting history about this item can
be found by Googling ‘A.B. Chance Co.,’ ‘link Chance anchoring
systems,’ and ‘history of earth anchoring.” Photo submitted by
Douglas Zuellner, Campbell, Neb. See patent 1,384,825

C. Tenon cutting tool, providing support for a
cutting blade near a work piece. Photo submitted by Jim Pense,
West Fork, Ark. See patent 2,848,020

D. Nose ringing tool, as identified by Leonard
Keifer, Gaithersburg, Md. Photo submitted by Harold Jehle,
Baldwin, Kan. See patent 339,152

To submit photos:

Send prints to Farm Collector, 1503
S.W. 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609. Send digital images to:

• Photos should be taken in a well-lit area against a plain
background. Include dimensions and any markings on the
. We cannot guarantee every photo will be published,
nor can we respond to inquiries regarding when photos will be
published. No photos will be returned.

• Digital photos should be sent as .jpgs at a minimum of 300

To identify an item:

Send answers (accompanied by your name and
address) to Farm Collector, 1503 S.W. 42nd St., Topeka, KS
66609. E-mail responses may be sent to

  • Published on Jul 1, 2009
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