Best Six for 2017

As mentioned, 2017 was a fantastic year of hunting and gathering.  Here are the best six fo


  1. Wall mount GENERAL APPLIANCE CO. SO. CHARLESTON W.VA. PAT. PEND opener with corkscrew. Not pictured in any corkscrew publication thus far. No patent yet found.
  1. Syroco Painted Clown in Red.
  1. Charles C. Call’s patent of 1909 (#911,292) for a “Cork Pulling Device.” (see O’Leary, 1996, p. 126). Marked CALL’S IDEAL CORK PULLER PAT. APPLIED FOR SPRINGFIELD MASS. An interesting side note, C.C. Call had several patents with some awarded to Smith and Wesson, where Call was an employee for 65 years!
  1. G. B. Adams 1896 Patent (# 564.356). The second example in the collection, the reverse is marked THE WHITEHEAD & HOAG CO. NEWARK, N.J., PATENTED JULY 17, 1894, APRIL 14, 1896, JULY 21, 1896. The front is an advertisement for R. V. PIERCE, M.D. Pres. World’s Dispensary Medical Ass’n.

(see Morris, 2012,

  1. Humason & Beckley Ivory handled direct pull. Marked on the shank H & B, MF’G CO.


  1. Spaulding-Gorham Ivory and Sterling prong puller. This looks strikingly like a Converse patent, however the only marking is SPAULDING-GORHAM and STERLING 97. Spaulding & Co., originally was S. Hoard & Co., but in 1920 was bought by Gorham Mfg., and they changed the name to Spaulding-Gorham Inc.  The name remained until 1943, when it was changed to Spaulding & Co, in 1943.  So, we can at least put a date range to the cork puller of somewhere between 1920 and 1943.


What will make the best six for 2018, you just never know what will turn up.

Good hunting!

Another corkscrew article

The other day I received an email asking if I would be willing to be interviewed for an upcoming magazine article on collecting antique bar and cellar instruments.

I, of course, agreed and the interview will be taking place over the next couple days.  Having written a fair amount, and having interviewed others myself, I know that it is sometimes helpful to get some background information.  So, in my affirmative response, I asked is there any specific information the writer was looking for.

One of the questions he responded with was: What are a couple of rare corkscrews they could find but probably won’t?



They probably won’t find a Philos Blake.  But, they could.

They probably won’t find a Russell.  But, they could.

They probably won’t find a Syroco Tramp in a box of kitchen stuff at a random flea market.  But they could.

They probably won’t find a folding Greeley bowl of folding button hooks.  But they could.

When I go out on the hunt for corkscrews, there are lots of rare corkscrews that I probably won’t find.  But,  the mere fact that there is a chance, even a slim one, that something rare, scarce, previously undocumented, unusual, desirable, etc., is what drives me.

It is the reason that we hunt.

And, no, I haven’t found  a Philos Blake (yet) other than the one laying at my feet, and I no I haven’t found a Russell (yet), but for all the Walkers, Williamsons, and Cloughs that you do find here and there, amongst them, there may be a Sperry or a White, or a Rees…   Hope springs eternal!

After the article is published, I will try and get a copy and post it here.

Maybe this it will pique the interest of a new collector or two.

And, while they may not find any rarities as they begin the hunt…they still could.




Narrowing the list

It is that time of year again.  26 days until the end of the fiscal-corkscrew-collecting year. And, while I would love to add a few more to the collection before the year is out, it is time to start narrowing the list of what will make the best six of the year.

And, as has become tradition, I put it out to you guys to vote on what should make the list.

For me, sometimes it isn’t about the rarest per se, but the most appropriateness of fit within the collection.  And, given that I focus on corkscrews of American manufacture, that certainly narrows the list already.

Still, feel free to vote below, and help me narrow the list!

It has indeed been a good year of corkscrew collecting thus far…

Of course, there were many other corkscrews picked up this year that could make the list but just didn’t make the cut.  And, there are those that have been traded away; The combination hammer with fold out corkscrew ended up with John Morris. The black and red legs that got traded away, but then ended up in Jose’s collection via the auction.  And, of course there was the folding Greeley that made its way into TC’s collection.

It is still a good time to be a corkscrew collector!  They are still out there.  Here is a small sampling of corkscrews that didn’t make the list, but might make someone else’s best 6!

That said, here are the 9 that are in the running, but it is time to narrow them down to six.

Of course, something could turn up in the coming weeks that makes the decision that much harder.

Still, feel free to weigh in.


Looks like I need some corkscrew stands…

As mentioned the other day, the IKEA adventure landed us three cases for the corkscrew collection.  After assembling the first one, and then taking apart and then assembling it correctly, the other two went together pretty quickly.

And, putting them in place we came to the realization that we need more shelves and little bracket thingies to hold said shelves.

And, we need more cases!  We are thinking two more.


And, we definitely need some corkscrew stands.

Still, I have placed a few in one of the cases, and I like how the top is glass.  This allows for more light to come in, and is a great place to set a glass of wine (or two).


Did I mentioned we need more corkscrew stands…


I do like using the oversized cork stands from Tommy, but we need more!  And, probably some of those acrylic stands as well.

I will continue to load corkscrews into the cases in the coming days, and will add more pictures then.

And, if you get tired of looking at corkscrews when you come to visit, the view from the corkscrew room isn’t bad.