a little birdie

About a week ago, there was an interesting carved tusk corkscrew on eBay.

It was listed at 19.99, and as is often the case, a buy it now option was added. Undoubtedly, at a collector’s request.

With a very fair price of 65 dollars, it was snapped up immediately.

Not by me.

Now, whether it was seller’s regret, or whether the seller was informed that they undersold, the same corkscrew was re-listed at a higher price, but with a best offer option.

I offered…

And, a deal was struck.

Better photos, and any markings will be shared when it arrives.

Corkscrew Tattoo

A few years ago, I mulled the idea of getting a tattoo of a corkscrew, and at the time a few collectors weighed in with their suggestions.

There is particular tattoo artist whose work I really like here in Maine, and she has a waiting list. In fact, she is so in demand, that she only opens her books for appointments. And, with COVID over the last year and a half, tattooing hasn’t been happening much.

Over the last week or so, she announced that she was again taking clients. That said, the subject matter needs to meet her style. And, I have no doubt that she thought that a vintage corkscrew was not only cool, but does mirror her stylings.

So, we put in a tattoo request, and a few days ago got the following response:

“Hello Josef!

Thank you for submitting a request form to schedule a tattoo appointment with me.

The piece you’ve inquired about; Vintage corkscrew ( ____________ patent) on right inner forearm, about 4″ x 6″ in size will take me an estimated 3 hours to complete.

My first available date is….”

Of course, the type of patent wasn’t left blank in the email, but it could make for a fun round of guessing…

Feel free to make a guess.

Of course, in two months the truth will reveal itself.

A New Corkscrew

From an 1886 issue of The Iron Age

A New Corkscrew

The accompanying illustration represents a corkscrew which is put on market by W. B. Woodman & Co., Newark, N. J.   The corkscrew is in the usual way turned into the cork until the swivel passes over the cork and rests atop the bottle.  Then the ring at the upper end of the corkscrew is to be lifted off the hook on the handle, when the handle, again turned as before, no longer drives the screw into the cork, but lifts the screw, and with it the cork, and thus withdraws the cork from the bottle.  

A New Corkscrew

The central wire, it will thus be seen, after it is inserted in the cork, remains without turning, and the cork, it is claimed is drawn without difficulty.  The manufacturers allude to the facility with which the operation is performed, and the resulting advantage.

When found, the Woodman’s is marked across the handle WOODMAN’S PATENT and with the patent date of PAT’D JAN.Y 6.1886.

It should be noted, that Woodman’s patent was awarded on June, 29 1886 (patent number 344,556).

New ’99 Solid Handle Steel Cork Screw.

Wm. R. Clough, Alton, N. H., proprietor of the Rockwell Clough Company, is offering the solid handle steel cork screw illustrated herewith.  Under Mr. Clough’s former patents wood handle wire cork screws were made on hand machines, and the handles were made in two pieces and glued together, being more expensive and less reliable than the one shown here, which has a solid handle and is made automatically.  

A bundle of wire is placed on a reel, the wire goes in one end of the machine and the handle at the other.  Meeting they are formed into a cork screw ready for market at one stroke.  A patent has been applied for the present design.