Speaking of Empire…

In August, I shared an advertisement from the Empire Forge Company that featured the Curley patent corkscrew.

This morning, in Frank Leslie’s Popular Monthly from January 1895

I found an advertisement from Empire Forge that features the Empire corkscrew marked EMPIRE, although it is a little hard to make out in the advertisement,

For the lofty price of thirty cents…

I have some extra change in my pocket, if you have an Empire (or Curley) Corkscrew with which you want to part.

The BIG L.E.B.

Over the years, I have shared information regarding the L.E.B. CO. tool kit; an interesting multi-tool that amongst other tools, includes a cork puller that would be used in the manner of a Greeley.

Appearing in advertisements in various publications from 1912 to 1915, we clearly can get a timeframe when the tool kit was produced.

And, there are variations as to what the kit was named; Premium Pocket Tool Kit, Sportsman’s Pocket Tool Kit, and Pocket Tool Kit, and The 47 Pocket Tool Kit.

In a 1912 edition of American Stationer, the tool kit was also featured:

THE 47 POCKET TOOL KIT

The illustrations here shown are the 47 Pocket Tool Kit which is sold by the L.E.B Sales Company, of 115 Broadway, New York. This kit, true to its name

takes up but little space, being quite easily carried in one’s pocket. As can be seen by the list of tools it contains it is practically indispensable around the house, in the barn, garage or, for that matter, in one’s office. Besides the usefulness of its tool it has the added advantage of economy and price. The Kit being sold for a dollar, and the whole lot not taking up the room that one ordinary hammer occupies. Moreover, the tools can always be found because the Kit is at hand in which to replace them. There is therefore every argument in favor of the Kit for the ordinary run of uses.

As truthfully stated by the L. E. B. Sales Company: “No matter where one goes, or under what circumstances, some one or more of these tools will serve some useful or vital purpose. You have seen tool holders, tool chests, and other collections of tools, but never before a Pocket Tool Kit, a Kit that can be made your constant companion and servant to serve so many wants that cannot be enumerated.

“Some of the tools included in the Kit are: Hammer, screw driver, chisel, dividers, tweezers, compass, saw, protractor, file, round file, rule, bevel, universal chuck, tool handle, T square, tri square, scratch guage, depth gauge, slide calipers, reamer, countersink, brad awl, scratch awl, straight edge, ink eraser, tack claw, nail set, center punch, bag needle, sail needle, button hook, spatula, scraper, stiletto, and ten others. They are made on honor and sold on guarantee, price $1.”

Before we left on vacation, I managed to pick up a large version of the pocket tool kit. And, the size difference between the regular L.E.B. Co. tool kit, and the larger one is significant:

Unlike the regular version, where the base is sold, the larger version is cutaway, for ease of removing the tools.
And, they are marked differently. Looks like we have another name for the piece; the “AUTO POCKET TOOL KIT.” Both are marked PAT. PEND.
The cork puller tools, are also different in size. Not only in length, but also reflective to the chuck size into which they would be inserted for use.

A really neat addition to the cork puller collection.

moose, deer, turkey, fox, loons…

For the last week, the lovely and I were were up in Rangeley, Maine. It was a fantastic spot, with the fall colors just beginning to change.

On our first day, as we were driving in, we managed to spot a moose loping along side the rode.

That night, as we were sipping wine at our camp, we heard loons calling, and then again in the early hours of the following morning.

Each day, we set out on some sort of adventure, climbing Bald Mountain, hiking to Smalls Falls, visiting areas of Maine that we had never been, and just enjoying a week free of responsibility.

On the drive to get there, we did hit a couple of antique stores, but no corkscrews were to be found.

We drove back yesterday, and at the very beginning of our drive, a small fox walked across the road, turned to us, as if to say “have a safe drive,” and turned and walked back across the road.

A fantastic time away, and now it is back to corkscrewing around…

More news to follow.

Little Korky

Over the last week, I have had my eyes on a corkscrew on eBay.

I know, big surprise..

And, I had placed a bid early, and said corkscrew lot ended yesterday.

Now, the corkscrew doesn’t have some fabulous function, nor is it made of some unusual materials, it is just cool, and fairly hard to come by…

There have been two of these that have sold on the corkscrewcollectors.com auction; one for a fairly high price, and one for a few dollars more than the bid that ultimately won the auction on eBay. And, there was one that turned up at the Dearborn CCCC meeting in 2012.

As the auction was winding down to the last two minutes, the corkscrew had jumped in price, and I had pretty much decided to let it go…

And, then with about 30 seconds left, I changed my mind, and threw out a bid.

I was the high bidder!

With 8 seconds to go, my bid was taken out.

With 5 seconds left, I went higher.

I won!

Literally…within seconds of the auction ending, I received a message from TC, which simply said:

 

“Really?”

 

Apparently he was one of the other bidders, and we had a good exchange about the scarcity of the little corkscrew, and how we both wanted it.

 

In 2014, when Fred Kincaid had put his up for sale, he referred to it as “Little Korky,” as it certainly seems to be part of the McDowell patent Korkmaster family…

A fun addition to the collection.  The next one is yours TC!

 

Ladies Friend…

On Sep. 02, 1879, Benjamin N. Shelley of Anderson, Indiana was awarded patent number 219,313 for his Improved Combination Implement for Domestic and Other Uses.

lfdraw

When the Shelley turns up, it is usually found with a PATD APLD FOR marking (with the two D’s in superscript) as well as the mark “LADIES FRIEND.”

In Shelly’s patent drawing, he explains:

My invention consists of a combined implement for domestic and other purposes, which presents in a single device and compact form the functions of hammer, screw-driver, cork-screw, can-opener, ice-pick, glass cutter and breaker, stove-lifter, tack-drawer, saw-set, knife-sharpener, wrench, steak-tenderer, and putty-knife.

That is a lot of uses.

And, a lot of hyphens…

That said, when the “LADIES FRIEND” turns up, they almost always have damage to the corkscrew.  Odd turns, broken tips; it makes you wonder what material Shelley used for the corkscrew, or perhaps people in 1878 opted to use the corkscrew as the stove-lifter or steak-tenderer…

Still, it is fabulous combination multi-tool with corkscrew that I would love to add to the collection…

If you have a “LADIES FRIEND” laying around, feel free to drop me a line at Josef@vintagecorkscrews,com

Of course, feel free to email regarding any antique corkscrews with which you wish to part.

 

1954 McGill

From the 1954 publication Inventor’s Handbook

Under the Patent Office’s category of “Cork Extractors” we find this familiar-looking device of 1867.  Can openers of this style have, of course, become obsolete, but there are several contemporary corkscrews based on this principle.

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The 1867 corkscrew described (and pictured) in Inventor’s Handbook is, of course, the 1867 McGill (#61,080) patent.

 

mcgillpatentydraw

 

Interestingly, the McGill has still yet to have turned up with the frame and can opener, mirroring the patent drawing, and instead, when found, is a simple direct pull, with a can opener end; usually marked PATENT:

That said, I would love to find a spring mechanism frame corkscrew with can opener attached to the handle…that looks like the 1867 patent!

 

Matthews’ 1893 patent arrives…

Yesterday, the Matthews patent door securer with corkscrew arrived, and it didn’t disappoint.

Nicely marked, it is in fabulous condition with a sharp helix, and it is an awesome addition to the collection.

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Marked PAT APL’D FOR

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Note: the door securer is threaded, and screws into the center piece.

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As mentioned previously, it is marked for Matthews’ 1892 patent, as his 1893 patent is a combination of his 1892 patent with the addition of the case and corkscrew in 1893.

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And, the corkscrew does function as a peg and worm, with the door securer serving as the peg.

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I haven’t tried this out yet…as a corkscrew NOR as a door securer…

Noyes-es

noyes

In 1906, Harry Noyes was awarded patent # 824,807 for his cork extractor.

And, while not rare, it is a neat little corkscrew, that often turns up with advertising for GREEN RIVER WHISKEY, THE WHISKEY WITHOUT A HEADACHE

And, underneath the lever, they are marked with Universal June 27, ‘05-July 3, ‘06,” as he had an earlier patent–and actually later patents as well.

Noyes was awarded another patent in 1908 Patent for a Pocket Cork Extractor.

1908

Anyone have the 1908 patent?

That said, there are other examples other than the Green River, with the blank version being a little harder to find.

Still, there are others that utilized the Universal Lever Cork Extractor as a vehicle to market their products.

mensell

In 2017, Jack had a foursome of Noyes-es for sale, two with advertising for Green River, one blank, and one that featured advertising for WM. MENSTELL, 465 LENOX AVE. N.Y.

I have several examples of the Noyes.  Both the Green Whiskey and the blank

But also: BROTHERHOOD WINE CO., 328-334 SPRING ST. N.Y.

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And, recently picked up a Noyes that has advertising for OLD JERSEY WHISKEY, WILLIAM FRIES

oldjersey

In the JFO (Just for Openers) handbook, they have a listing for the NOYES (known in JFO speak as a P-041) carrying an advertisement for OLYMPIA YES! IT’S THE WATER.

But, this leads me to a question for all of you.  Do you have a Noyes with different advertising.  Feel free to drop me a line, and let’s see what we can come up with!

 

BROTHERHOOD WINES CO. 328-334 SPRING ST. N.Y.

Blank / No Advertising

GREEN RIVER, THE WHISKEY WITHOUT A HEADACHE

OLD JERSEY WHISKEY, WILLIAM FRIES

OLYMPIA YES! IT’S THE WATER

WM. MENSTELL, 465 LENOX AVE. N.Y.

 

Pearl Wedding Select Whiskey

One of the coolest aspect of collecting, is that over the years, as you develop friendships with other collectors, your collecting friends will make trades with you knowing that they have something you want.  And, of course, you are well aware of corkscrews that will also fit within their collections.

And, as word has gotten out that I am on the 1903 Lowenstein patent hunt, TC offered up his Pearl Wedding Select Whiskey example as part of a trade.

pearlweddingryewhiskey

In doing research into Lowenstein and those that used his patent as a vehicle for advertising, Pearl Wedding is key, as within their advertising at the time, they actually feature a corkscrew attached to their bottle.

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On the two bottles on the right, the Lowenstein is shown…

pearlnonside

 

Hmmmm… reduce the size of the image, rotate clockwise, erase the background…

Looks like it should fit…

 

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A really cool addition to the collection.  Thanks for the deal TC!

If you have a similar corkscrew, with different advertising, I am interested!

 

Weiss-Eichold

This morning, while sipping coffee, I was checking email, and JM sent in a photo of the two Lowenstein patents in their collection.

One was a red A & P, and the other, I had never seen or heard of before, serving as an advertisement for:

WEISS – EICHOLD

LIQUOR CO.

MOBILE

ALA

weiss

With a little research, it appears that Weiss-Eichold was wholesale dealer of Liquors, Cigars, and Tobaccos, and apparently a  “Rectifier of Spirits.”

building

And, they produced brands such as A BIG HIT whiskey, GOLDEN CREAM whiskey, and blended brands such as BELLE OF MOBILE, RAG TIME, and SIMON SUGGS.

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Awesome to add another Lowenstein to the list  Thanks JM!
Keep them coming.
Thus far the here is the known examples…

“BAILEY’S H & C PURE RYE”

“FRANCIS H LEGGETT & CO. NEW YORK”

“F. WESTHEIMER & SONS, PLANET, SOUR MASH, ST. JOSEPH, MO”

“HANCE BROS. & WHITE, PHARMCL CHEMISTS PHILADELPHIA”

“HUMPHREY & MARTIN’S FINE WHISKEYS PHILAD“ (in yellow or tan)

“PEARL WEDDING RYE”

“PEARL WEDDING SELECT WHISKEY”

“THE GREAT A & P TEA CO. EXTRACTS” (in red or yellow/tan).

“WEISS-EICHOLD, LIQUOR DEALERS, MOBILE, ALA”

What others are out there?
What Lowenstein patents do you have in your collection?