Can you identify our newest antique tool?

Item No. 1236

Hello from Hazard! 

Item No. 1234

Lisa Warne said Item No. 1234 is indeed a hay fork/hay knife combination, patented by AB Sprout in 1867 in Pennsylvania.
Here is the patent information:
The item was submitted by A.F. Fritz, of Valencia, Pennsylvania.






Item No. 1235

Many of you wrote and called in on the dangers of Item No. 1235.
Ed Steele, of Wadsworth, Ohio, said it is a railroad cap. “The lead straps secure it to a rail (two about 50 feet apart). The reports say it is louder than a shotgun and warn the engineer to slow the train and watch for signals and possible stop due to unsafe situations ahead. These were used before the hand held radios came into use. Don’t mess! People have been killed mishandling these mini-fragment grenades!”

Item No. 1235 inside

Stephen Schloemer, of Willard, Ohio, agrees and said it appears to be an explosive device used in the railroad industry known as a cap or torpedo. These were placed on the rail with the lead straps wrapped around the rail head by an employee on the ground protecting against a following train. When a train struck the torpedo an explosion occurred warning the crew to be on the lookout for a red fusee or flag man.
Steven Doan, of Guysville, Ohio; (who warned to use extreme caution with the items); R. W. Piper, of Ashtabula, Ohio; Ed Warren; Andy; and Bernie all agree with the others.
Joyce Hann found three tins (Item No. 1235) in a box at her late father’s house.


Item No. 1236

Jim Carmany, of Rittman, Ohio, submitted Item No. 1236. It is 53 inches by 4 inches.
Do you know what the item is or how the item is used? Let us know by emailing us at; or by mail to: Hazard a Guess, c/o Farm and Dairy, P.O. Box 38, Salem, OH 44460.



Item No. 1236 (Close)


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