Rockwell Clough…

Not any exciting corkscrew news as of 8:29 on Sunday morning, but I did pick up an interesting corkscrew go-with (or actually 4 interesting corkscrew go-withs). Four sheets of W.R. Clough letterhead circa 1900.

GIven there are four sheets, I am willing to share the love. So, if would like some ephemera to add to your corkscrew collections, just drop me a line.

I am sure we can work out an equitable trade : )


lot 185

Yesterday afternoon, I received an email entitled “lot 185.”  I figured this would be the invoice for the direct pulls mentioned earlier.

It wasn’t.

Instead, this was what the email said:


Because of problems in last nights auction, the lots with $4.00 opening bids up to lot 282 will have to be pulled from this auction and put in a future auction. The reason for this is that bidders were not able to place bids. What happened is that it showed a bid 0 and bids were not allowed to be placed. Because of this, they were not considered live bidding and would not be fair or legal for our estates that need to be sold at live bidding, and also unfair to customers who I heard from (many) that were trying to bid on these items. Thank you for understanding, and please call if you have any further questions. We will notify you when these items go back up to auction.
Thank you again,

Well, that explains why the 5 corkscrew lots in this particular auction all ended with a winning bid of 4 dollars a piece, but it doesn’t really make me happy that I didn’t legally or fairly win lot 185–perhaps I won illegally and unfairly.  :  )

So, I am guessing the wooden corkscrew lot which might contain an ivory corkscrew will be going back up for auction at a future date; I will bid again, and hopefully their systems allow other bids to come through–just not the ones that are higher than mine : )

Not to worry, there will be other corkscrews arriving soon enough, and other auctions upon which to bid.

Speaking of, the other day there was a Singleton listed on eBay in a small lot of corkscrews, and with no takers at his Buy it Now price, the seller decided to lower it a bit.  After looking at the pictures closely, I figured I would take a chance.  Could it be marked?  Could the worm not actually be a turn short?  Or perhaps it is a bit short and resharpened 100 years ago or so.


We shall see in a couple of days when it shows up.



a small gathering at the house last night, and a few corkscrews…

Last night we had a small gathering at the house.  And, despite a very light rain, our spirits were un-dampened!  A great evening with about 20 or so people enjoying the view, a bit of wine, and some fantastic food as most of our guests brought various dishes, and this island is truly an island of really good cooks/chefs.

And, while we were sharing in the conviviality–with some online bids placed–some emails came through confirming a few wins/purchases.  This morning going through the various emails that had come through it seems that I had picked up a LEB CO tool kit on eBay and a small grouping of direct pulls from a non-eBay auction in California.



I figured the direct pull lot was worth taking a chance on.  The lot was advertised as a wooden handle corkscrew lot, but the corkscrew on the far right looks like it might be ivory.  I had placed a bid, but prior to the auction starting P-Dibby called to ask what amount I would be bidding.  I had thought the auction was still a few days off, and was thankful he reminded me that it was indeed yesterday.  I went back, and upped my bid.

When I saw the email this morning, I was genuinely surprised that I won, and that the winning bid was all of four dollars.  I am thinking that even if the acorn handle direct pull isn’t ivory, it was worth the price of admission.

I am hoping for Ivory!!!


half way through…

We are 6 months into the corkscrew fiscal year, and I started considering what might be the best 6 corkscrew for the year thus far…  And, so I started digging around and looking at what corkscrews have been acquired this year, and thought I would put together a first-half best 6–hoping that over the next 6 months several will be replaced to create an even better best 6 by year’s end.

There is at least one that will definitely be staying in the best 6 regardless, but with Brimfield coming up soon, Belgium in August, Brimgfield again in September, the constant hunt on eBay, and other antiquing adventures on the mainland, you never know what might turn up next.

Here is what I am considering as the best 6 thus far:




Will all of these make the best 6 by December?

So…just for kicks, which of these corkscrews do you think will make the best 6 by year’s end…


I would like to say that I acquired a rare American patented corkscrew this morning (or last night, or over the last few days, or…) but, as mentioned recently, corkscrew acquisitions have been a bit slow as of late.  I have picked up one or two, but nothing truly of note–not for a lack of trying mind you.

Or perhaps it is a result of a lack of trying.  Much of our focus, as of late, is putting the finishing touches on the remodel.  And, while there are still some touches to finish, yesterday I put down the last coat of poly on the floors, and soon enough we will be moving furniture in!  Yes, we are almost done!


We still have a bit of trim work in the bathroom, a door needs to be painted in the new laundry, and I do need to design and build the bed, but the room itself looks pretty awesome, and the view isn’t bad either.


That said, finishing touches, trim work, and door painting will be put on hold for a couple of days, as tomorrow the lovely and I will be running a half-marathon on the mainland, and then a few friends are coming to visit following the race.  So, if all goes as planned, remodeling will be replaced with kayaking, bbq-ing, swimming in the quarry, hiking around the island, boating to other islands, a bit of wine drinking, and sharing with our friends the island we call home.

Of course, in the mean time, if I do manage to procure a corkscrew–I wonder if there will be any estate sales along the  half-marathon route–I will report back here.

Stay tuned.

slow news days…

With much of my attention being spent on the remodel–which is almost finished!–I haven’t been spending much time corkscrewing around.  And, so corkscrew news has been a little slow.

That said, RL (henceforth known as “P-Dibby” for a variety of reasons) managed to score a fantastic Hagenauer corkscrew on a non-ebay site, and this afternoon I did manage to pick up a 1929 Detroyes patent for a fair price.



It looks a bit rusty, and hopefully it will clean up.  I definitely have a thing for prong pullers, and this is the first example of the Detroyes for me.

And, of big news for the seller of the Moore patent that I mentioned a few days ago.  After months of listing, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting, and relisting her sardine fork with corkscrew, received some bids!    In the end the Moore sold for 62.51…



Where we these guys the last 6 months?


65 pages of entertainment!

I was perusing eBay this morning (via the iPhone as I was on the boat) and ran across a complete 65 page catalog from the Enterprise  Manufacturing Co. of Penn’a from 1891.


Featuring 65 pages of illustrated wares including some corkscrews, I figured…what the heck.  It had a buy it now, so I snapped i up.

enterprisecorkpullerGiven it is an original catalog, and features a myriad of products–a smoked beef shaver, for example—if any of you out there would like a copy, let me know.  I will gladly make them available after it arrives.

another clandestine hand-off

This morning, online, I found an interesting Williamson bullet corkscrew with advertising for sale.  The price was affordable, so I sent off an email to express my interest.

However, as they are across the country–technically out of the country–doing a deal in person wouldn’t be possible.  So, in my email I offered to pay for shipping as well, and awaited a response.

The response, when it arrived, wasn’t promising.  The seller explained, that the deal had to be local, but thanks for expressing an interest.


So, I considered who in that particular area might be willing to meet up with seller on my behalf.

I sent off an email, and in short order, an email arrived which read, “Will see that I can do.”

And, then three hours later, I was forwarded an email with details of the upcoming transaction between the bullet-seller and the conveniently proximate and willing fellow collector.

In their email exchange, the seller explained that she couldn’t arrange delivery, but suggested that they could meet up.  The email reads;

“After work I board the Seabus at Lonsdale Quay at 4:17, it crosses in about 12 minutes so I would be docking on the Vancouver side at approximately 4:30 and then scooting up from the water to the inside of the terminal.  How about if we meet near the front of the Starbucks in the Vancouver Seabus terminal at about 4:30.”

Okay.  Near the front of Starbucks in the Vancouver Seabus Terminal…at approximately 4:30  But, how will the aforementioned cooperative collector recognize the person carrying a corkscrew that could fit in one’s pocket.

The email continues;

“For ease in finding me, look for someone 5 feet tall, mid 50s, and carrying a small red and gold box in plain view.”

I am guessing the small red and gold box in plain view might contain the Jewett Bigelow & Brooks Coal Detroit Michigan roundlet corkscrew.


Thanks for arranging the meeting WM!!!   And, for shipping the corkscrew to me!


I have been spending much time on construction chores, and little time corkscrewing around as of late  And, I have been spending little time perusing the listings on eBay.  

But, in between hammering, nailing, sanding, and now white-washing the ceiling and walls in the master bedroom remodel, I did manage to find a few moments to check out some recent listings.  And, one in particular was of interest–not that others aren’t, this one just happened to be affordable and had a nice Buy it Now price.

A Swedish figural, I have never had one of these before, and when it arrived in the mail, I was surprised at the size of it–the from foot to foot it measures 4.5 inches.

Henceforth, this will affectionately be known as the buckethead corkscrew…




Not to be confused with this Buckethead…





Also, for those who might be interested, Jean Kigel, an artist from Maine, has done a fantastic watercolor of two lobsters, holding corks in their claws, and helixes attached to their heads.  Perhaps it will find its way into one of your collections.  


Homarus Lafite Rothschild 1961 low res[1]



You can link to Jean Kigel’s website at

the unsaleable Moore patent

For the last several months (and I mean several) there has been a Moore patent corkscrew (combination folding sardine fork thingy) that has been listed on ebay repeatedly.  And, for whatever reason has yet to get a bid.

It will run the full 7 days, and then end (most recently at 55.00), and then get relisted a few days later for a similar price…  Although the price has changed now and then; higher then lower, sometimes back up to the previous opening bid…


What is it about this particular corkscrew, that is keeping bidders from bidding?  What is keeping you all from bidding?


I have two different Moore patents in my collection, and still at 55.00 with identical advertising on one of the two that I own, I really don’t need a second one.  Still, it is a nice corkscrew, but with  no interest.

Perhaps this time it has been listed, someone will come through…

Or, maybe not : )