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18th Century Tackle Box... (pics).

 
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Yaquina143
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Real Name: Anonymous

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 1:33 am    Post subject: 18th Century Tackle Box... (pics). Reply with quote

Tackle boxes have been around for centuries but unfortunately the majority were just boxes that happen to carry tackle, not specially made boxes for angling. That doesn't mean they didn't exist... but dedicated "tackleboxes" were not as common as they are today. However, if one does a little research, clues begin to show up... clues that can lead to an accurate, functional and (if I do say so myself) nice looking period tacklebox for your 18th century angling gear.

Below is a painting that I recent found on the net, featuring an 18th century family having a lovely day of angling. This painting, called " Riverside Group" was painted by artist Arthur William Devis (17621822).

Note the box next to the gentlemen, (I have zoomed in on it). I have seen one other tackle box of this design years ago at a small exhibit of commercial/sportsman fishing gear at a local historical society many years ago. That one was very similar to the one in the painting and was dated to around 1780-1810.

Here is the painting showing the tackle box...



By taking a close look at the box in the painting and taking into account what I remember about the other box I had seen and how it functioned, I have taken a shot at recreating an 18th century tacklebox.

The one in the painting is an octagon but I decided that a rectangle would be easier to recreate. If there were octagonal boxes, I have little doubt that square and rectangular boxes were around as well.

The box that I saw in person had the long side bailed handle, just as the one in the painting clearly has. It also was a double box, stacked; which is what the one in the painting appears to be as well. When I viewed the late 18th century box, the bail handle was the design feature that always stuck with me; a rather cleaver way to keep a double box together I thought. By the looks of the box in the painting, it shared this bit of engineering as well. I never really thought that the memory of that displayed box would come in handing for reenacting, I just thought it was an interesting bit of woodworking (another hobby of mine).

Based on all of this information, here is my take on an 18th century tacklebox.



I have not decided yet what kind of stain to use and still have to do a little finish sanding here and there so you are looking at the bare wood. I made it from Poplar, a nice, period wood to work with. Nowhere in the construction did I use any nails, brads or staples; it is constructed entirely with wood glue and oak pins.

As you can see in the following photos, the box is actually a two piece item, with an upper and lower compartment. The stack is held secure when carried by the pin and slot configuration of the bail. A rather clever bit of engineering on the part of Colonial craftsman I must say and now having replicated it, I can say that it does in fact work like a charm!

The box stacked measures 10.5" inches long, 7.5" inches wide and about 8" inches tall (not including the handle). I haven't decided whether or not I will be making similiar tackleboxes for sale as they are a bit labor intensive (=expensive). It would depend on the interest.

Now I just have to decide how to finish it. Wood stain? Paint? Hmmm.... any thoughts?





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Walton45
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Joined: 16 May 2007
Posts: 19
Location: Texas
Real Name: Paul W. Jones

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 5:39 am    Post subject: Tackle Box Reply with quote

...


Last edited by Walton45 on Sat Sep 15, 2007 10:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Dave Muns
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Joined: 16 May 2007
Posts: 116
Location: Michigan
Real Name: David Muns

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is some fine work Dana!
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Jai
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Real Name: Anonymous

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A quick look through "Early American Antique Country Furnishings" shows that a majority of small boxes of varying usage were painted. You may consider paint just from a "seal it up nice and tight" point of view? Or you could paint it with milk paint and then follow with a resin varnish or several coats of linseed oil. Nice box by the way.

Jai
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Grenadier42
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Real Name: Anonymous

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 9:20 am    Post subject: Period Tackle Box Reply with quote

Well-done, sir!

I have several friends who are handy with poplar (they make all of our cartridge box inserts) and are also avid fishermen. I will show this wonderful bit of experiential archaeology to them for them to drool over! Fine, solid bit of research...thanks for sharing!

Grenadier42
0706.14-1021hrs
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Yaquina143
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Real Name: Anonymous

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Earlier this morning I took a couple of hours and did the finish work on the tacklebox and thought I would share the finished product with all of you.

Last night I mentioned in this thread that I was unsure whether to paint the box, or stain it... I had several people email me and say that their preference would be to paint the box and I tend to agree. After doing a little reading and looking through my books I found that for the most part things like this were painted. It would seem that if it was not a fancy piece of furniture it was generally painted. Boxes, trunks, cases, etc... most of the ones in my woodworking books that date to around the 18th and early 19th century are painted, or at least look as though they once were.

Color was then the issue. I chose a dark forest green with a rose colored trim. These colors were together on a couple of trunk and box examples in my books and I thought they looked good together. I found some samples online of milk paint colors and did my best to match them. I really didn't have the time or materials to use real milk paint, but this is quite close I think.

I aged the box just slightly; not enough to make it look centuries old, but at least to give it a "used but loved" look.

I am looking forward to trying it out next week and hopefully, it won't just be on the shore... it will be sitting in front of me in my pirogue that I am making over the weekend.

Now.... back to making angling rods! Sending out the first orders next week!

Cheers!




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brian
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Joined: 16 May 2007
Posts: 82
Location: Land of Seneca
Real Name: Brian Schlifke

PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 4:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very Nice! Thank You for the post. What type of tackle might be carried in a Tackle Box back then? Were lures used or just a line, hook and bait? I have a small fishing kit that i carry but it's just a heavy linen line and a few hooks. Thanks again for the information and pictures. Nice Job!

Brian
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Grenadier42
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Real Name: Anonymous

PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 12:36 pm    Post subject: Much Awe and Appreciation! Reply with quote

Once again, Yaquina, beautiful job! Thanks for sharing the finished product. As I grow too old and fat to chase Frenchie all over the Colonies, I may need one for my retirement leisure (if they don't send me to Chelsea as a pensioner!)!
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