Missing link in the S&J story?

Discussion in 'Forum: Saw Identification and Discussion' started by Barleys, Jul 7, 2015.

  1. Barleys

    Barleys Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    546
    This is at first glance a very unexciting saw, but I got excited when I first glimpsed the mark on US ebay (had to wait 4 months for it until our daughter arrived for a visit). I think it is a missing link in the development of Spear's business (at first with Mr Love, who didn't last v long). He took young Samuel Jackson as an apprentice during the first decade of the 19th century, and the apprentice quickly became the driving force – his notebooks of selling trips to Europe in the 1820s are in the Sheffield City Library's Archives. At some point I am guessing that Spear, having taken Jackson into partnership, had to order new marks for the saws they were making, and the size of the letters, and the fact (at least I think it's a fact) that the saw was marked with two separate punches, indicate that Jackson is the addition; older saws have simply the Spear mark, which looks very similar to this one. Later still – from only about 1880 I think –the two had new marks made which gave Jackson a more equal place, but they kept on the John Spear name alone for a long time, maybe as an extra product line?
    Now…as to dating. Here is a tentative dating sequence for Spear (& Jackson) marks up to about 1920: it may not be wholly consistent with the dates I put in the saw book, and I apologise if I'm being annoyingly inconsistent; I can't show the saws as well here, but the datings are based on the whole appearance as far as possible.
    I can't seem to place a caption, but the dates of the sequence below – all on backsaws except where noted – are c1810, c1815, c1820, c1830 (* the one I'm getting excited about), c1840, c1840, c1850, 1850-1870 (handsaw mark), 1880-1920
     

    Attached Files:

    pmcgee likes this.
  2. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Thanks for the timeline with the marks, Simon.

    That is the sort of thing that is so helpful with dating.

    The American sourced S and J was lovely when you bought it, and it still is so.
     
  3. shoarthing

    shoarthing Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    117
    Simon - Hi - such a persuasive & helpful sequence . . . thank you.

    A possible tightening of the saw-making dates & duration for LOVE & SPEAR (expressed in your BSSM as: " . . . towards the end of the C18th") may come from these two newspaper obituaries; the first from June 1849:

    IMG_6115.jpeg

    . . . the second from September 1801:

    IMG_6137.jpeg

    LOVE & SPEAR - as Factors & merchants; also as steel-refiners - was a partnership or partnerships dating back to 1769; listed as such (but not as saw-makers) in two Sheffield Directories of 1787 & 1797.

    John Cawthorn's obituary notice infers he - LOVE & SPEAR's saw-manufactury's first apprentice - began work in 1797, at the age of 12.

    John Love died in September 1801.

    An apprentice-indenture of May 1802 for Stephen Liversidge is to: "Jno & Alex Spear & Co" "saw manufacturers" . . . . .

    As usual, the nicety of judgement shown in BSSM is reinforced by further research.
     
    David likes this.