Hazard A Guess: Week of March 18, 2010


Hello from Hazard!

Two weeks in a row with sunshine! Woo-hoo! (Except that we all know that March can bring some rather hefty snowstorms…)

Several sharp-eyed readers quickly identified Item No. 886 as a tobacco grinder.

Joe and Pat Varmuzek of Deerfield, Ohio; Arthur Niederriter, of Coraopolis, Pa.; Lowell Reed, of Cowansville, Pa.; Jessica Cole, Bentleyville, Pa.; Vivian Kosto, Chester, W.Va.; and Keith Kondik of Norton, Ohio — all knew what the item was. In fact, Mr. Niederriter has the exact same model, and then a second model marked “Pat. March 15, 1859.

Patented Aug. 2, 1859 (Mr. Frank’s version also includes the mark “Ext. Aug. 2, 1873”; does “ext.” mean patent was extended that date?), the grinder chops tobacco leaves and the ground tobacco (for use in making hand-rolled cigarettes) would be dispensed through a side opening that has a retractable sliding cover.

Mr. Frank’s model was made by Russell & Erwin Mfg., New Britain, Conn.

Item No. 886, open

Thanks for the quick responses, guys!

* * *

For this week’s item, we turn to loyal Hazard reader Nello Mungai, of Hickory, Pa.

Nello sends in a photo for a friend, who wants to know what this thing is. It’s marked “Pat’d Sept. 9 1890”.

Item No. 887

What do you think? Write to: Hazard a Guess, P.O. Box 38, Salem, OH 44460; or via e-mail to: editorial@farmanddairy.com.


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  1. I own 2 of item NO.945. It is a Knife Sharpner/ Polisher. I have restored both of mine and they really turned out great. One is a Kent Patent & Mfg. 199 High Holborn, London. I have the other at my Booth in Medina Antique Mall, do not recall the Mfg. of that one. A great old piece of History.


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