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Catalogue of American
Patented Antique Tools
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Gustave Caillebotte (1848-1894)
Les raboteurs de parquet (The Floor Planers) 1875
Oil on canvas. Height 40 inches; Width 57.25 inches

Tools are a powerful symbol of creativity - the first expression of human cognition, tools represent mankind's ability to progress, to better ourselves, to make the world a better place.

They have a special significance to human society -- tools are one of the primary means by which we distinguish ourselves from other animals. Tools are the father of all other antiques. Master paintings, the great statues, the finest pottery, the most decorative furniture, the most colorful tapestries -- all of these would have been nothing more than someone's fleeting idea without the tools needed to create them. Every manmade object depended on the use of tools for its existence, and mankind's greatest intelligence is reserved for the creation of ever newer and better tools to solve the production problems of the day. 

Closely examine a tool, and you will likely discover the essence of its function distilled into the simplest possible form. Yet often, these fascinating objects are themselves highly decorative and possess graphic and colorful forms. On the pages of this web site, you'll be able to view many of America's most beautiful, rare, and collectible patented antique tools.  I invite you to peruse these pages and see for yourself the artistic and inventive spirit imbued within these symbols of creativity.

Browse through this site using the tool buttons at the top of the page (Planes, Levels, Rules, Treadles, Others, Moderns).
© 2004-2013 Steve Johnson. All rights reserved on all pages in this web site. Please send questions or comments about this site to admin@finetools.com .
Today's date is Wednesday, December 17, 2014.

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