Best Six (+1) for 2019


1.1885 Edward P. Haff patent (317,123) corkscrew with frame and spring assist, marked across the metal band for two patents, “HAFF MF’G CO., NEW YORK, PATD APL. 14 85 MAY 5TH 85” (See O’Leary, page 71).


2. Two 1878 Alfred W. Sperry patent (204,389) corkscrews. The normal version with a longer turn-button (the word used in Sperry’s patent description) is on the left. On the right, is constructed differently, with a shorter turn-button, and marked in a different location.  It also comes closer in design to the patent drawing.  Both are marked, “PAT’d MAY 28, 1878” (See O’Leary, page 42).


For those playing along, by placing a thumb on the turn-button, it is easily moved to one side, thus allowing for the helix to be replaced.  Sperry’s patent explains, “The object of this invention is to construct the instrument so that several screws may be supplied with the instrument, or any person unskilled may remove the screw or introduce a different one…”

3. 1888 John W. Milam patent (390,691) cork extractor, as shown at our AGM Show and Tell, and in the most recent issue of The Bottle Scrue Times, the Milam Cork Extractor was marketed as the Kentucky Cork Extractor. It is marked, “J.W. Milam, Frankfort, Kentucky” and “PATAPPLIEDFOR”(See O’Leary, page 201).

4. Double lever corkscrew, marked PAT. APD. FOR. Interestingly, the action of the levers raises the cork by squeezing them together.  Also, marked on the levers with two 9’s (or 6’s should you turn it upside down).


5. Marked PAT APPD FOR this unusual combination tool has a fold out corkscrew. A fellow collector of corkscrews, explained that the serrated edge on the opener part, indicates that the chain attachment is intended to serve as a jar wrench.


6. 1930 Nathan Jenkins patent (1,784,488) combination tool marked “15 TOOLS IN ONE” and “PAT. DEC 9 1930” (See O’Leary, page 145).


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