In the sheep barn the auctioneer is surrounded by bidders as his helpers hold up the current item for sale--in this case a set of made-in-China drill bits that ended up selling for around $3. Note the see of Carhartt and jeans. Standard uniform for the day.
Aaron poses with one of the stacking forks I was interested in--an updated American Gothic. I didn't get the forks--the price went well above what I, cheapskate that I am, was willing to pay.
A stacking fork is a pitchfork used for building haystacks. We used to have two or three of these but what became of them I don't know. We built a haystack a couple of times. The technique is surprisingly tricky. I'll have to write a post sometime to explain how to do it, and how it felt to stick one of these forks in your leg.
Larry loading the truck with one of my purchases--a leather collar for a work horse. This one is fairly large and in good shape. A little neatsfoot oil will bring it to life again.
The small pitcher pump on the left ($12.50), two one-man crosscut saws ($20) to add to the log cabin building tools we're collecting; the horse collar and hames in the corner behind the tire ($25), a wooden handled scythe ($7) and two boxes of hand tools ($9) for my little house toolbox that mysteriously loses tools and no one knows where they go.
Two other purchases not shown: a stout prybar ($15) and 2 log chains ($10).
One of the best and perhaps most surprising purchases: a string of mine lights. These are what deep mines string back through the tunnels to light them. They're very portable and easily hooked up--just plug them in to an outlet. We plan to use them in the crawlspace under the house. At $30, these were a steal.
Larry's favorite purchase was the small digging hoe ($5). What will he use it for? Digging ramps this spring, of course. It's almost time for that annual ritual. It will work well for digging sassafras roots too--another spring tonic in the mountains. Here the hoe is resting on my Peerless Victor wook cook stove--not currently in use because the insurance company made us disconnect it to get fire insurance. We hope to re-connect it this year. I cooked on this stove in winters when I was home all day, and also whenever the power went off. There are tricks to cooking on a wood stove that I hope I still remember when we get it working again.)
All in all, it was a great day. There is nothing I love more than looking at tools and antiques. I like to think about who might have used them, the palces the items have been and the work that was so necessary to the households of that time. Some items I bring home to use; others are for display, to remember and honor the work of those long past.