Friday, August 14, 2009

Mystery Artifact Update

The long-lost Mystery Artifact has finally returned, from an unauthorized leave of absence. BAD MYSTERY ARTIFACT! At any rate, this was the object:

...and we DID have a winner, Lisele! She guessed, "I'm gonna call this a work light or task light. Looks like you pound that pointy end into the wall to provide a temporary light while you work on some project. Then you pull it out again with the loop end. Analogous to the caged task light hanging above my sewing machine in the basement."

That's exactly correct. In my ever-useful 1902 Sears, Roebuck catalog, I found one for sale. It's called a "Miner's Candlestick," but in a catalog sent out to an agrarian society, I'm confident that this was used on farms for early morning milking and other tasks where folks would need what is a period flashlight. Congratulations, Lisele!

Mystery Artifact has been naughty lately, so Dusty D is making a change. I'm consolidating our 2 weekly Mystery Artifacts into 1 and will publish them in both here and on annarbor.com out of consideration for folks who don't want to go to annarbor.com & register & all. That should make things easier for readers and easier for me to rein things in a bit. Thanks for your patience!

5 comments :

Dusty D said...

I imagine this was used, by aforementioned dairyman, by wedging it into a crack between boards in the barn wall, or using the hook to hang it over the edge of a manger, &c. Handy little thing when you need just enough light to see what you're doing.

Lisele said...

Do I get a prize???

Dusty D said...

Of COURSE! And no one would be more deserving! I could (probably) scare up a historical article on beekeeping and mail it to ya if you like.

Lisele said...

Yes, yes, yes!!!! That would be dear to the heart of an apiatrix.

Dusty D said...

O.K.! Off to rummage in the files now; I'll see what I can find!