Hazard A Guess: Week of Oct. 29, 2009


Hello from Hazard!

We have more leftovers in regards to Item No. 873, which we have shown for several weeks.

Tod Mills, of Ashland, Ohio, writes that judging from the small size of the handle, relative to the head, he guesses this is no ordinary sledge. He said it may be a “bucking hammer,” used to install rivets and wasn’t intended to be swung, but the mass of the head provided inertia needed to do the bucking. He says the hole on the end might have held one of an assortment of dyes, each one for a specific size or type of rivet.

Eleanor Kittle, of Southington, Ohio, believes it is a telephone linemans hammer. She says they used it to screw in a pole to climb it. The hole fit down over the end of the spike so it could tighten it.

Item No. 873

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Item No. 874 received more responses from readers, most identified it as the same thing: a railroad switch lock, or keeper. It’s used to secure the handle of a track switch when changing from one set of tracks to another on a railroad.


Item No. 874

Our thanks to the following readers who responded: Ron Burrows of Salem, Ohio; Ed Seifert of Waterford, Pa.; Terry Moore of Hookstown, Pa.; Pat Pendleton of Bloomingdale, Ohio; and Vic Wheeler of Albion, Pa.

Edward Wanchock, of Sewickley, Pa., was the only one who guessed something different than a railroad switch lock. He believes it is a nutcracker.

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We will again show Item No. 875. Longtime Hazard reader, Wayne Cooper, of Fombell, Pa., sent this to us.


Item No. 875

Can anyone identify how it was used?

Send your answers 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 thought item 880 was too easy so I did’t comment. Since you are still asking let me say it is a real help to hold catfish when taking them off the hook.
    Item 881 is a fluter used by the ladies to press the ruffles back into their collars.Have a nice day


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