Noyes Patent Variant

Written by our good friend, Bob “The Toolman” Roger:

NOYES’ Patents

Updated 3/21/23

H. W. Noyes was issued patent 793318 on June 27, 1905 for a ‘waiters-style’ corkscrew. He added some improvements to it as patent 824807 on July 3, 1906. He also had a later patent for a different style (898387) of corkscrew.

In his two earlier patents his idea was that by pushing down on the ‘neck stand’ the worm was also opened, and his two patents included three different versions of neck-stand. Most examples of his patents are marked with the Green River brand of whiskey. The common version has a worm with 2 ½ turns, and the pivoted end of the shank is round with cupped inside surfaces of the handle to accommodate the shank. 

Figure 1 shows two examples of Noyes’ patents, an uncommon version and the common version. In the uncommon version, the worm has 3 ½ turns, yet its overall length is the same as in the common version. The pivot end of its shank is flattened and the insides of the accommodating handle are also flat. The collar on the upper shank is also much less pronounced compared to the common version. Both his 1905 and 1906 patents have the ends of the handle cupped to accommodate and hold (snap in and out) the round end of the worm shank. 

What is different in this uncommon version, from both patents and the common version, is that the worm shank end is flattened, and the inside ends of the handle are also flat (not cupped). To achieve holding the worm in the open or closed position, Noyes has two holes in the worm shank – one above and one below the pivot hole. Then he shallowly stamps corresponding points of the handle ends from the outside, forming protrusions (nubs) on the inside. These four nubs (two in each of the handle ends) engage the two holes on the shank from each side, providing the ‘snap’ needed to hold the worm either open or closed. 

The outside of the neck stand on the common example is stamped with the Green River marks, and the inside is not marked. The uncommon version shows no evidence of any marks on the outside, but is stamped PAT JUNE 27 05 JULY 3 06 on the inside. 

It appears that after obtaining his second patent, Noyes experimented with a different method of securing the worm without having to cup the handle ends, and it was a more expensive design to manufacture so was not produced in quantity. This is the only example of this uncommon design that I am aware of.

Thanks for the contribution Bob! And, for those that are reading this. Check your Noyes-es! Do you have this variation?

Bath Antiques Show

This morning, I hopped on the first ferry, and made my way to the mainland.

And, after a brief stop in Rockland, I made my way down to Bath, Maine for the monthly antique show. Well, technically it’s monthly until April, which is the last show, and then they start up again in the fall.

And, it isn’t a big show, but 40-45 dealers usually show up and one always has corkscrews, not great corkscrews, but good corkscrews. Another dealer shows up in Bath every once in a while, and he too always has corkscrews. Generally he has good corkscrews, but they are fairly pricey. Still, every once in a while we can strike a deal.

The first good corkscrew dealer WAS there, the other dealer that occassionally shows up WASN’T there. But, we will run into each other soon enough at Brimfield.

So, I meandered around, looking at each table / booth, and there were some interesting things to be had.

And, the good corkscrew dealer had a case filled with treasures…

And, as he explained, he had just a collection and half of them were still at his house…

After digging around, I came with a small pile.

The German corkscrew with odd spring, I have never owned before. And, I knew I needed to grab that. The small perfume piece, is always good trade bait, and underneath the owl is a metal Haff with a Clough worm with button.

In regards to the owl, it looks to be bronze rather than brass, and I have never seen this particular shape before.

And, well, how could I not pick up a “BUD” open with corkscrew.

No other corkscrews that I really HAD to have, but the aforementioned good corkscrew guy invited me to visit him at his home and see the rest of the corkscrews when was headed his way.

And, as luck would have it, next week I will be in his neighborhood.

Stay tuned!

“…serviceable in any household.”

From a 1905 issue of Irrigation Age (thanks to collector Robert Million)



We are showing herewith an all around tool, which would be serviceable in any household.  By examination of the illustration it will be seen that this tool discloses twelve different combination, as follows :

Hatchet, hammer, wire cutter, wire splicer, pinchers, alligator wrench, leather punch, corkscrew, nail claw, hunter’s knife, can opener and screw driver ; all of which are convenient practical tools, ever ready at hand for immediate use in any emergency, in which event they are especially valuable.

The aggregation of twelve different tools as shown in illustration, if bought separately in any retail hardware store, would cost in the neighborhood of $7.00.  We

will be glad to furnish these tools to any of our readers for $3.50 prepaid, or we will send one of these tools, charges prepaid to our readers sending us a club of ten new subscribers to the Irrigation Age at $1.00.  It will be seen that by securing ten subscriptions to the Irrigation Age and remitting same to us that you may secure a combination of twelve tools which could not be purchased for less than $6.00 or $7.00.

We guarantee this tool to be of the best workmanship and will replace any that show defects.

If you have this Haynes-Bates combination tool. I am interested in acquiring one!

And, I will pay more than $3.50! And, more than the cost of 10 subscriptions to Irrigation Age!

“…but an apology as a cork withdrawing instrument…”

From a 1900 issue of The Atlanta Constitution:

Handy Cork Extractor

Despite its years of use, the corkscrew, as found in the average household, is still but an apology as a cork withdrawing instrument, as it is almost sure to ruin the cork and make it practically valueless, at least after extraction two or three times.  Then again, a corkscrews is not always at hand when most needed, while the little corkscrew substitute recently patented by Joseph R. Kennedy, of Camden, and illustrated herewith, is designed to come with every tightly sealed bottle.  As its cost is but trifling, there is nothing to prevent its adoption by bottlers on the score of economy.  It consists of a narrow strip of flexible tinplate, the ends of which are formed into claws by means of indentations made in the tin When the cork is driven home one of these tin stripes is bent in the form of a loop, one claw going on each side of the cork.  Now, when the cork is pushed into the neck of the bottle the tin strip is drawn in too, and the superfluous length of the tin forming the loop is bent down as to lie flat on top of the cork, the device being made of a very flexible material for that purpose, when a loop is formed into which the finger of any rigid article may be introduced.  

By pulling on this loop the strip is pulled out and in doing so the cork is extracted.  This device can be used over and over again, and its use does not mutilate the cork in anyway.  Perhaps the greatest objection to its use is that it might not produce an air-tight seal, although with suitable corks, properly put in this could be overcome.

It’s NEW! It’s Sanitary! It’s HANDY

From a 1929 issue of Christian Science Monitor:

Or 2 for 25 cents

It’s NEW!  It’s Sanitary!  It’s HANDY!

This wonderful new MILK CAP LIFTER does a Dozen Different Daily Duties: Cork Puller, Bottle Opener, Nut Pick, Fruit Seeder, and Crisco Can Opener, etc.  It will help you too.  Order YOURS TODAY!  Send money to


706 N. 8th Street.   St. Joseph MO.

Okay… so, what does the “K-P” Kitchen Helper look like?

Do you have one?

Send me photos!

…thoroughly trustworthy and practical…

1914 issue of Hardware Age:

The “Handy-Man” Tool Kit

The American Novelty Company, Washington, D.C., is putting out the “Handy Man” tool kit, which is stated to be very compact and practical.  The company states that each tool in the “Handy-Man” kit is thoroughly trustworthy and practical, the whole outfit being desiged from the viewpoint of utility.  The entire set of tools is put up in a drawn-steel gun metal finished box, the size of which is 5 by 6 by 2 inches.

“Handy-Man” tool kit made by the American Novelty Company

Each tool is firmly held in place by steel snap springs and jackets, which prevent the tools from moving about and rattling.  It is stated that no matter in what position the kit is carried, or how much it is shaken, the tools with not become dislodged.  The set consists of fifteen high grade tools, in combination with an interchangeable handle, and the company states that every tool in this set is one which is brought into daily use. 

The illustration shows ten of these tools, the other five compactly nested in the handle itself.  The tools consist of a ball pein hammer, a Disston saw, an awl, a pair of Bernhard pliers and wire cutters, a gimlet, a tack puller, a chisel, a gouge chisel, a can opener, a corkscrew, a large screw driver, a small screw driver, a three-cornered file and a punch.  The American Novelty Company states that it will send a sample kit by parcel post, charges prepaid, at the regular whole-quantity price of $33 per dozen of $2.75 each.

a little sea smoke…

The last couple of days have been cold here on the island.

Yesterday, by 4:00 (about the time this photo was taken, the windchill was 36 degrees below zero…

Still, with the woodstove going, and a bit of wine, we made it through the evening.

And, this morning we awoke to similar (not the wine).

Currently (at 10 am) it is -1 degree, with the wind chill bringing the temperature down to -27. And, the wind has been howling.

That said, the temps are starting to increase, and she be downright balmy by this afternoon, with temperatures expected to climb to 12 degrees by sunset.

So, the woodstove is still going… and will be for the rest of the day / evening.

No corkscrew news to report at the moment…hopefully that will change over the course of the day.

Stay warm!


From an 1862 issue issue of The Post Office London Directory:


The old process of Drawing Corks by ordinary Corkscrews is entirely obviated in the construction and novel action of the “ Presto and Despatch Corkscrews.”  Their superiority will at once be seen and their use understood by the following instructions, vis –Pull the screw A out to its full extent, and then insert the point of the worm into the Centre of the Cork, and by slight pressure (without turning the hand) it will immediately penetrate the Cork ; this being effected, then proceed to draw it.  To remove the Cork from the worm raise the Button B, or the spring C, then slightly pull the Cork, which will instantly be released.

The principle on which these two Corkscrews are constructed is the same, excepting the mode of securing the screw, which is effected in the “ Despatch ‘ by a spring fixed to the end of the barrel, and in the “ Presto “ at one end of the handle, both producing the same result.  The screw A should occasionally be oiled.  The screw being made of solid brass, and the steel worm electroed, it will not rust.





Sample, of a Book of Drawings, may be had on application

Window Display of Cutlery

From an 1894 issue of Hardware Dealer’s Magazine

Window Display of Cutlery

Where a hardware dealer wishes to make an attractive display of cutlery and small tools in his window without using much of the tock, the device illustrated herewith is easily arranged :

All that is necessary to make this window fixture is a round or square piece of timber of from one and a half to two feet in length and about six inches in diameter.

The wood is concealed by a veneer of cork, which can be obtained in slabs at any wholesale drug store, and if soaked in water will confirm to the shape of the wood interior.

Method of Construction

The cork may be either glued to the wood or fastened with round-head nickle screws.

Two pieces of neatly-turned wood of oak or cherry are needed to cover each end of the block, as shown in the illustration.  When completed the articles to be displayed are slightly imbedded in the cork covering, which holds them at any angle desired and permits of a good view in all directions.  Pocket knives of various styles, fancy scissors, handsome corkscrews and od pieces of butlery, carelessly arranged, produce a very pretty effect.  When suspended from the ceiling of the window by a fine wire or cork, which a bird-cage spring at the upper end of the wire, the block will be in constant motion, and glistening blades of the knives in the sunlight will attract favorable attention.

The device may also be used for small tools, and if it is desired to make a special drive on a line of scissors or pocket knives, a variety of styles at a uniform price may be displayed with a neat car offering the public their choice at a stated price.