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Old 21st May 2024, 05:59 PM   #1
mgolab
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Default Axe Question

I purchased it in Southern Indiana by Vincennes where the 8th Regiment was involved during the American Revolution.

On the one side of the hatchet, there appears to be blacksmith initials and the number 4. On the other side, are more marks, not sure whether proof marks, rack numbers, 8 with a P or F? The axe appears to be 18th century, hand forged. Not sure whether I also see a faint broad arrow mark on the side with the 8.

I added the handle.


The head is slightly under 7 inches long.
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Old 22nd May 2024, 02:38 PM   #2
Ed
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I don't think that an ax would be "proofed", that is a firearm issue. Inspected more like.

Nice find.
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Old 22nd May 2024, 02:51 PM   #3
M ELEY
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Excellent example of the old style poll axes. These types made their way into North America with the French and the Hudson Bay Company British fur traders. Both Neumann and Hartzler's guides show similar examples. Great find, Mark!
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Old 29th May 2024, 01:44 AM   #4
A. G. Maisey
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Are we quite certain that this hatchet head can be called a "poll axe"?
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Old 1st June 2024, 02:07 PM   #5
Interested Party
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[[/B]
Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey View Post
Are we quite certain that this hatchet head can be called a "poll axe"?
A picture taken from above would help answer this question. Picture 1 seems to show a little thickening towards the heel of the ax. Or are you referring to size?

EDIT: On rereading the entire thread it was originally called a hatchet in the OP. My questions would be is it a belt ax? Which were to my understanding smaller than what we think of an ax today. Either way I like its profile.

Last edited by Interested Party; 1st June 2024 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 1st June 2024, 11:19 PM   #6
A. G. Maisey
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I saw "poll axe", but the first thing I noticed when I looked at the pic was that eye was not round.

Then I wondered exactly what a "poll axe"was, so I asked Dr. Google, & what I found was a rather elaborate medieval shaft weapon.

However, the man who taught me smithing (Gordon Blackwell) called any type of axe that had a round eye a "poll axe", & I found that a number of other Australian smiths used the same terminology.

I have a bit of a thing for axes in general, one of my uncles was a competition axeman, when he got his final promotion I got his 5 pound racing axe, I re-dressed it & it is now my go-to axe around my property. Apart from that, I constantly look for old, nice quality axes & hatchets in garage sales & markets. I don't collect them, I don't know much about them, but I like them & I accumulate them.

I feel that this hatchet is not really a poll axe by any measure, but if anybody wants to call it this, I won't argue with them.
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