W Pond Birmingham

Discussion in 'Forum: Saw Identification and Discussion' started by fred0325, May 26, 2011.

  1. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Hello all,

    When I was obsessing about King's and Queen's crowns I bought this as an example of a Queen's crown on the medallion and said that I would put the saw on the website sometime. Now I am sure that you have all been waiting with breath bated and crossed appendages (or perhaps not) for it to appear, but until now I have not been able to photograph it even half properly.

    Quite by accident I was moving it around the study and it caught the light just at the right angle to see the etch, which explains why my thumb is in one of the photo's. I had to hold it just right to get even these meagre efforts.

    Anyway here they are. The etch may not be of much interest unless you get a partial one on a saw that you can compare with what details you see here.

    Fred
     

    Attached Files:

  2. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    668
    Hi Fred,

    Things have been a bit busy lately, and I've been meaning to comment on this etch, I can't quite make out the trademark, it looks vaguely like a baseball cap, with the words WE (baseball cap) ALE..

    What do you think the central graphic is?

    Regards
    Ray
     
  3. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Hi Ray,

    The photo is a lot better than the image that you can see most of the time in real life, and so what is on the photo is really all that there is.

    I thought that the "baseball cap" was some sort of tent or canopy and and hence the Victorian (or Edwardian as may well be the case with this mark) play on words "We Cover All". Although on looking at it again, it could be a cap, and the sense about covering would still be justified.

    This seems a bit of a strange motto for a saw maker, but I think that Ponds, although they portray themselves on this etch as Toolmakers, were, essentially ironmongers. The motto, if I am right would imply that they could provide anything.

    If you follow the link below

    http://www.birminghamforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=5166.11

    it shows you a wonderful photograph of W Pond on Steelhouse Lane.

    I think that Simon may have an interest in this maker and he would undoubtedly be able to tell you far more than I. I see that on the photo on the above website they bill themselves as toolmakers, and on one blog someone mentioned that Steelhouse Lane, although fronted by shops, had extensive workshops behind and was at the heart of the gunmaking district. So they may well have made tools, but saws, I am not so sure.

    This last bit has been done from memory and so may be a load of jumbled up confusion, but the photo is definitely there.

    Fred
     
  4. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    668
    Hi Fred,

    That's a great photo. Thanks for linking to it.

    [​IMG]

    Image above is from http://www.birminghamforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=5166.11

    They certainly carried a wide range, We "cap it" All or We cover All, would be
    appropriate.

    I like the shears/snips/scissors in the centre right.

    What would you think the date might be? early 1900's

    Regards
    Ray
     
  5. lui

    lui Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    77
    With referance to the date, the four didgit phone number would be a clue.

    I failed to find any info, but others might have better luck.

    regards

    lui
     
  6. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Hi Ray,

    The first record that I can find for W.Pond is 1901 and so we are definitely looking at the Edward/George era and pre WW1 at the earliest. The dress looks to me to be Edwardian.

    Whether it is later, I do not know. What I do find interesting (and may be an indicator of date) is that they have a telephone number. Now I am presuming that business/commerce would be one of the first categories of people who would want to be connected to the telephone but I have a great lack of knowledge as to when they became reasonably common.

    Also the number has 4 digits in it. The telephone number of the farm that I grew up on had only three digits, but that was in a rural area and this is in a town and so a 4th may have been required to cope with the number of installed lines.

    Do we have any telephone enthusiasts out there who know about such things.

    Fred
     
  7. ilges71

    ilges71 Member

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    22
    Yes Fred, it is very likely a business front in Birmingham would have a factory behind it.
    The 18th centuary layout in Birmingham had a row of houses with "courts behind them. originally these were small dwellings around a courtyard. As time went on someone who had been running a home workshop would take on next door for more space and in some cases eventually the whole court would become workshop space. Of course in the early days it was all "out work" Even mid 20th centuary some Birmingham companies had dozens of one man operations doing on operation on a product before it was moved on to another building for the next process to be carried out, especially specialist trades. This is why so many companies could not compete with mass production.

    In some cases such as Atkins, we have pictorial evidence from their catalogue that their factory did take over a block of houses which must have been demolished.

    In fact with early tools we do tend to forget to our cost that "the manufacturer" was in fact putting work out to a series of seperate skilled workers and much work was by hand, so it amazing really that two early Victorian saws look the same with the same makers mark, parts of them were probably made by two different men on two different premises.

    Regarding the phone number, it does not have an exchange so we presume it is a Birmingham number. Quite early in 20th cent Birmingham had named exchanges, Aston, Sparkhill etc. Access to a business directory of the appropriate age may list the phone number? From memory I would have thought by 1920 the change to area names would have taken place, but I am afraid my available souces at the moment do not help.
     
  8. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Thank-you for the reply Graham,

    It is good to see you back (if indeed you ever left). If the number was pre-exchanges and pre 1920 -ish, that would about right for the dress of the two people in the photo.

    What I have just noticed is that there is "Stand 33" on the banner in the middle of the photo. Up until now I thought that the photo was of their shop front, but it looks like this layout was a stand at some exhibition or other. Would it have been a national one (in which case we may get a tentative date), or were there regular trade exhibitions by this time (in which case we will not).

    I started this topic with a comment about Kings' and Queens' crowns. (The topic itself is currently on the second page of this site near the top). I would value your opinion on this as I am sure that styles of crowns for the monarchs will be everyday stuff to someone who knows about markings on stamps.

    Fred
     
  9. jossimbyr

    jossimbyr Member

    Messages:
    22
    Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but I played around a bit with Photoshop and was able to bring the etch into a little more detail. Since I was just doing simple dodges and burns, I obliterated part of the etching in spots, but it is still pretty legible. The center logo is definitely a cap of some sort.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    There is no problem at all about resurrecting old topics if you can shed some light on them. And you have done with this one. My technophobia and technical incompetence precludes me from doing such things.

    As you say, it is definitely a cap, and by the looks of it more of a jockey's cap than anything else.

    So I am assuming that the implication is "We cover All"

    Thank-you for the effort.

    Fred
     
  11. jossimbyr

    jossimbyr Member

    Messages:
    22
    You're most welcome. Didn't take but a couple of minutes (hence the awful job! :D) So, if we are to assume that it's a jockey's cap, could there be more of a play on words? Is anyone up on their early-20th century British slang? I gave it a quick google and found that, at some point, jockey was slang for a prostitute's client. Not quite sure that would be applicable to this etch, but you never know. :p