Antique Tool Show and Sale - August 1
Members of the Early American Industries
Association (EAIA) and the Mid-West Tools Collectors
Association (M-WTCA) will be holding their annual Antique
Tool Show and Sale at the Garfield Farm Museum on Sunday,
August 1st from 9am – 1pm. This is the only joint show by
these two organizations in the mid-west open to the public.
Typically, over 30 different collectors will have their
tools on display and for sale.
Garfield Farm & Inn Museum looks at the
settlement era of northern Illinois, that was a time
traditions arose around the seasonal cycle of farming. In
that spirit, Garfield Farm’s calendar of events has created
its own traditions that are approaching nearly 30 years or
more in age. The Antique Tool Show is just such an annual
tradition paying tribute every first Sunday in August to the
craftsmanship and inventiveness of Americans since the
1700s. These collectors value and marvel at the simple hand
tools many whose design endured for centuries.
Garfield Farm Museum established this
annual show to help educate the public with the realities of
America’s founding. Hand tools were what built and shaped
America. In the 1840s as factories arose, handcrafted items
became massed produced but not in the way mass production is
envisioned today. The hand tools that individual craftsmen
used simply transitioned to the early factories. Waterpower
might have made it possible for a number of lathes to be
powered at once but hand tools were used to make any
turnings. Blacksmiths were becoming old school in the
mid-19th century, as the profession of mechanic became the
high tech of its day. Mechanics for the steam age to
manufacture as well as maintain locomotives and lake and
ocean going steamers needed even more specialized hand tools
to produce the precision needed.
Tool and die makers became the top hand
tool workers of the 19th and early 20th century. Their
inventiveness and skills would create the power tools that
society depends upon today. Appropriately, some of the most
avid collectors one can meet at the Antique Tool Show are
retired highly skilled tool and die makers. Many are the
last generation to use hand tools and the first to use
computerized machines to make the complex machines of mass
Yet fine craftsmanship has not disappeared
as thousands of hobbyists that enjoy working with wood,
avidly seek out antique tools. Such tools that might be made
of higher quality materials than what can be found on the
market today or are no longer made but are still needed to
reproduce certain designs or affects in furniture. The
Antique Tool Show is thus an opportunity to talk with such
experienced individuals who might have worked with the type
of tool one purchases.
The public is invited to bring a tool they
cannot identify as many of the collectors will know the
answer. This is the only joint meeting in Illinois
of the EAIA and M-WTCA that the public is invited to attend.
Opportunities at the show to become a member of the
organizations will give access to their regional and
Admission for adults is $7 and $2 for
children 12 years and under. Garfield Farm Museum is a
historically intact former prairie farmstead and teamster
inn being restored by volunteers as a 1840s working farm.
The museum is located 5 miles west of Geneva, IL off ILL Rt.
38 on Garfield Road. For more information call
(630)584-8485. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit
our website at www.garfieldfarm.org