Thompson Griffin

Discussion in 'Forum: Saw Identification and Discussion' started by kiwi, Sep 19, 2012.

  1. kiwi

    kiwi Most Valued Member

    I bought this saw recently at an estate auction because of the handle, which showed classic "old saw" lines (a narrow tapered nose, only 3 screws, London pattern base, very small hand hole).
    I was hoping that when I cleaned back the rust I would find an interesting name stamp. This frequently doesn't happen and I've been disappointed many times, but finally the name appeared (in very small lettering, only about 1/16" tall letters)
    It appears to be THOMPSON GRIFFIN& CO over GERMAN STEEL,
    This would date it in the era near the "Thompson Griffin Beilby & Co, Birmingham, 1818-1822" reference in HSMOB
    A saw to beat "Fred's Law"! I'm happy (I'm easily amused :) )
    The grip hole in the handle is only 2 3/4 inches deep, too small to place 4 fingers but comfortable with 3 (photo shows a regular size handle alongside for comparison)
    I don't think the wood is beech
    Another interesting feature is that the rip teeth are filed square across the front of the tooth, but with a beveled back of the tooth (although when this was filed is unknown)

    Attached Files:

    Charlie Earnest and shoarthing like this.
  2. shoarthing

    shoarthing Most Valued Member

    Kiwi - Hi - thrilling indeed, & quite possibly tightly dateable. Thomas Beilby was buried on November 24th 1826; William Thompson (snr.) died around 1829 - succeeded in his businesses by his namesake son; Joseph Griffin was buried July 30, 1830. They all had local & reasonably well-connected family & it is unlikely their names would be used post-mortem. So . . . .

    EDIT: "Thompson & Griffin" printed in formal context in The Birmingham Chronicle 03 August 1826 . . . Beilby 79 yo & died a couple of months later. He's in the same context (the three principals & their companies putting names to a petition) so this feels a likely name-changeover period.

    EDIT September 2023: Further research shows "Thompson, Griffin & Co" recorded in Aris' Gazette as of March 21st 1814 alongside "Joseph Griffin" - each were charitably donating to the same cause. So yes! . . .

    NB the succession to: Thompson, Leonard, & Dawes is difficult to date. Pigot's 1821 (Yorkshire, with extras) have no mention of Thompson, Griffin, Beilby & Co; but plural listings (including saws) for Thompson, Leonard, & Dawes. Exact same entries in the 1828 edition.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2023 at 7:51 PM
  3. Charlie Earnest

    Charlie Earnest Member

    I have found the same to be true on the two early Kenyon handsaws I measured. One is stamped Kenyon and the other Kenyon & Co. if I remember correctly. The same is true on some of the bigger tenon saws I’ve measured as well. My knuckles touch the inside of handle across from the grip, backside of the cheek, but the space between the horns is ample. As someone who makes a lot of reproduction saws and the occasional replacement handle I find this type of information helpful as well as fascinating. It’s quite extraordinary how much larger handles became over the years.