Inheriting Tools

In 1980, I was in college and I met Peggy Sarjeant.  Peggy and her family very quickly became  and continue to be my second family.  Matter of fact, all these year later, she lives down the street and her parents (Bill and Faye) live a couple of hours north.  So on Friday, she sent me the following text – “We are cleaning out our crawl space and found a ton of antique tools that belonged to my grandfather. Do you have any interest in looking at them?”  Needless to say, I appeared at her house 10 minutes later. Here’s the spread.

So here’s a bit on Peg’s great grandfather.  Ernest Sarjeant was an cabinet maker’s apprentice / indenture for Thomas and William Lock for 1892 to 1897 in Bristol.  Once he came over to America, he continued his cabinet making business in Daytona, Florida making a table for the Capital Building in 1947.

Here was the first of many upcoming rehab projects that I’ll be taking on with these tools.  Ernest used his tools for many years and he used them up completely.  The dovetail saw is one of many examples.  He sharpened this saw so many times that there is no saw plate  left.  Literally, his last sharpening left marks in the handle where the plate is held.  I’ve purchased a new saw plate for the saw from Bad Axe Tool Works and will let you know how it all comes together.

In my next post, I hope to include information on E. Sarjeant’s apprentice / indenture papers.

19 thoughts on “Inheriting Tools”

  1. I look forward to more background stories and some before & after pix.
    Here’s to chosen families, the gems of this life.

    1. Hmmm .. I haven’t even looked. I don’t think so, but I’ll double check. Word is that he spent every evening sitting at his 24″ grinding stone listening to the BBC.

      1. Man, i want a grinding stone like that!
        Not to insult, but i have a friend thats new to handtools and could use a bargin finishing stone. If you want to see it get put to use, let me know.

  2. Wow! What a great story. I’m a bit hesistant to go the antique route for the fear of the rehab work though i think I’ll have to eventually if I want any moulding planes. Thanks for sharing the story. Have a fun Christmas!!!

  3. Lucky you. I’m jealous. I have a 14″ Biggins & Son back saw restored by Bad Axe (great company!) that is stamped with my great great uncle’s name and initials. I hope you enjoy using your restored tools as much as I have enjoyed using my back saw.

  4. Into each life some tools must fall. I love stories of vintage tools finding their way into the hands of craftspeople. Looking forward to seeing the DT saw refurbished and ready for the next century of work.

  5. I’ve been seeing your instagram posts on the tools, what a great trove of history. And lotsa fun rehab projects. A new saw plate will put that dovetail saw back in the same, although I’d bet you could get another sharpening out of the old plate 🙂

  6. Wow. I would love to get my hands on some of these tools. It’ll be cool to hear a backstory on each tool – eg: who used it and what did it build.

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