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It followed me home (Part 2)

Discussion in 'Axe, Tomahawk, & Hatchet Forum' started by Steve Tall, Jun 12, 2014.

  1. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
    It's why I pointed out the possible ambiguity of the sentence quoted. The one may not see the sought after connection while the other will. I guess we can never know the intended meaning. Even so, a connection is clearly implied and subsequently confirmed.
    Don't worry AH I think you, anyway, are a bit more sensible than to argue the reverse migration theory. Not to be too anal or anything but at the same time I wouldn't want to dismiss the distinction, but in the text "holzaxt" is used at least twice that I can see.
    HolzAXE? believe me I'm familiar with the mixed language, it's what's spoken at my house.

    Still seeing this example on the display board out of das Vaterland I had to revise my first impression that it was some kind of mongrel aberration and see it now as the accurate reproduction it is. Or, even the possibility it was in fact brought from Germany in the migration. But then I guess it wouldn't really belong in a book, American Axes, would it, and the title would be something like, Axes Found in America.
     
    Square_peg, Agent_H and Hairy Clipper like this.
  2. Meek1

    Meek1

    171
    Aug 11, 2019
    I got that Richards Wilcox oiled up, new handle and mounted last night. The mechanics of this thing are fascinating to me. The 3 way split "washer" is just amazing that operates the quick release.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  3. ithinkverydeeply

    ithinkverydeeply Gold Member Gold Member

    979
    Dec 17, 2018
    Huh, I miss perceived the look of the larger axe.
    Both the 1889 patent Perfects have 7-8mm deep bevels, despite the one being a substantially larger axe.
    Oddly the 1885 patent has 8-9mm deep bevels but it also has the different, more conical, bevel shape.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Yankee Josh, Square_peg, A17 and 5 others like this.
  4. rjdankert

    rjdankert Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Mar 10, 2011
    Please correct me if I misinterpret your meaning here. Put another way, Mercer uses the term "Holzaxt" as merely a placeholder.

    I don't get the impression that Mercer insists that that pattern must absolutely be called a "Holzaxt".

    After all, Mercer also used the term "Split Axe" to describe the pattern.

    [​IMG]


    Bob
     
  5. rjdankert

    rjdankert Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Mar 10, 2011
    Sorry if this post has a bad tone to anyone, but I believe it is sensible (and maybe an obligation) to NOT point out an illogically based theory. Although the pattern in question may have had it's roots prior to it's appearance in PA, no evidence has yet been put fourth in this thread to demonstrate that this is actually the case.


    Bob
     
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  6. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
    I know it and it has me fairly baffled this defensive poster posture aka dpp syndrome. And you are right, no evidence here of the providence of this axe type.
     
    Hairy Clipper, Fmont and rjdankert like this.
  7. Agent_H

    Agent_H Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 21, 2013
    Given the populace who used it in the US it seems likely the pattern came with them and for whatever reason there aren’t many around or they disappeared, being replaced with something else. I’m good with whatever it gets called as it certainly looks like the klienhacke in the display Ernest shared. I just felt the thing got discounted in conversation due to name.

    I was picturing conversation on it more about it being used on wood gluts, what the beak on it was designed for, what type of tool a guy would use to pry it out or was it used to pry something else out, the eye shape, whether they are rare or common, bit construction, etc.

    The one that ITVD posted sure looks like one of the type that Mercer called the Holzaxe and attempted to ID according to what you also shared.
    I imagine Mercer’s internet coverage was spotty at the time.
     
  8. Agent_H

    Agent_H Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 21, 2013
    And you’re both right. :thumbsup:
     
  9. rjdankert

    rjdankert Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Mar 10, 2011
    Meek1, Square_peg, A17 and 4 others like this.
  10. Agent_H

    Agent_H Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 21, 2013
    Interesting. It looks like the rear of the handle sits flush to the extended poll on that one. Extra surface area- to add strength when prying it out or for striking? Maybe both?
     
  11. Fmont

    Fmont Gold Member Gold Member

    846
    Apr 20, 2017
    Lol
     
  12. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
    [​IMG]

    Here I hoisted up a picture from a kind of ebay.
    The Müeller is a later version of the Himmelberger Zeughammerwerk, same company more or less.
    The axe type is common enough that I found the one pictured which is now for sale in about a one minute search.
     
    Yankee Josh, Square_peg and A17 like this.
  13. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
  14. Agent_H

    Agent_H Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 21, 2013
    Maybe due to its diminutive size at 3lbs?
    Is there record of the sizes and patterns the Perfect Perfects were offered in?

    Like the cruiser sized Raven are scarcer than full sized double bits, does that hold true with the smaller single bits?

    I’m trying to picture anything smaller with the scripture on one side.
     
  15. ithinkverydeeply

    ithinkverydeeply Gold Member Gold Member

    979
    Dec 17, 2018
    Well at hand I have a 1927 Supplee-Biddle catalog showing several patterns. Some like Daytons started at 3lb but others like Kentuckys started at 3.5lb
    [​IMG]

    1908 Honeyman Hardware shows a 2 1/4 lb boys axe that is hand hammered and beveled. But I think I heard they didn’t have the long script on the boys axe. (I don’t know though.)
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Square_peg

    Square_peg Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    I humbly disagree with this.

    And I agree with this. I believe "holz(t) axe (axt)" was a generic term applied to any woodsman's axe by German immigrants in colonial America. Let me explain.

    Here's an axe I received a couple years ago - I think from JBLyttle. It's a well used hammer poll axe, the tool that would have been used as a felling axe with the hardened poll enabling it's use for driving the steel felling wedges of the time. It came with a sticker on it calling it a "holtz axe". My curiosity caused me to research "holtz axe" and what I found was at first confusing. Here are a few things I found that were called holz axes (pick your spelling).

    First here's mine.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    It's certainly an American pattern early hammer poll felling axe. Now here's another I found listed as a holz axe:

    [​IMG]

    It's a heavy polled felling axe. It appears to have a forged welded carbon steel poll and shows wear from driving wedges - consistent with begin used as a felling axe.

    But here's another I found listed as a "holtz axe/splitting axe with heavy back and original handle". This one looks like some of the splitting axes being discussed here.

    [​IMG]

    Researching the term I found this definition for "Holzaxt":

    [​IMG]

    Felling axe. And 'Holz' translates to 'wood'.
    So it's my belief that colonial German Americans used the term generically to mean "wood axe", either for felling or splitting.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2019
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  17. ithinkverydeeply

    ithinkverydeeply Gold Member Gold Member

    979
    Dec 17, 2018
    I’m not sure what this is about anymore.

    Are we saying that the vintage Holzaxt described in the literature is no different than any old axe you could buy today?

    Or that the authors are wrong and that axe shouldn’t be called a Holtzaxt?

    It’s not American with Austrian influences it’s just a bastardized knockoff of an Austrian axe?

    I don’t care which way the migration was, either way it demonstrates the Deutsch-Pennsylvania pedigree of the axe.

    ...The claim isn’t that German blacksmiths in Pennsylvania didn’t make axes like this is it??

    This seems like an exercise in semantics to say the authors were wrong to take away the name of an axe described in these books. That’s fine, we can play that game, it just leaves us without a name for the blacksmith made Deutsch-Pennsylvania splitting axe talked about in the literature.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2019
    Miller '72 and Fmont like this.
  18. ithinkverydeeply

    ithinkverydeeply Gold Member Gold Member

    979
    Dec 17, 2018
    Another curious thing about these old Perfect axes, are the rounded bits, particularly on the older ones.
    You often hear people poo-poo them as “having no bit left”. But look how little bit they had to begin with!? Especially the 1885 patent with the conical shape to it.
    The bevels ends right there at the blade!?! And what’s up with the pre-rounded heel and toe?
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Fmont

    Fmont Gold Member Gold Member

    846
    Apr 20, 2017
    It's essentially the definition of semantics. Language is one of the first things to be influenced with cultural exchanges, and terminology even within an established language varies from place to place, called a dialect. In this country is it sheetrock or drywall? A spanner or a wrench?

    It's the object that's interesting to me. And it's interesting to me that Pennsylvania Germans just started to use the colloquial term holzaxt. With the scarcity of information, figuring out how that came to be is probably an exercise in futility.

    But foreign influence in domestic ax patterns is really interesting to me. I find it fascinating to wonder about immigrants who added their historical knowledge to the evolution of North American axe patterns.
     
  20. Fmont

    Fmont Gold Member Gold Member

    846
    Apr 20, 2017
    The small amount of bit on those axes has always struck me as well.
     

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