We’ve all worked with a few


Working with Tools for Fun and Profit. 

By A Fredrick Collins. New Home Library, Philadelphia, 1946.

(not the Fredrick Collins, please note)

I must say that I’m rather taken by the cover illustration. Here we are in the 40s, when manhood had to be carefully denoted with — well let’s be honest — phallic symbols. A pipe in the mouth, and a crisp tie (carefully pinned, so your symbol doesn’t get tangled up with your tools of course).

All very improbable, I’d have thought. Or did they? Did chaps in the 40s put on a tie to go and potter in the shed? Did they really clutch unlit pipes in their teeth while awkwardly taking the chisel to an already nicely turned leg?

Why did we need all this regalia on a book cover? Were the tools not enough? Theses could be written about this!


About tartanpartan

It won't surprise you to learn that I'm quite keen on books, and spend as much of my spare time as possible picking over second hand book stalls and charity book sales with my surprisingly delicate claws.