206 pages, hardback with D/J, medium size, good in good D/W, covers good, internally good, boards good, gilt titled spine, illustrated in black & white, index
Unfamiliar household tools, items from bygone kitchens, gardens or country crafts, are still found in out-houses, roof spaces and around the farm. Whether beautiful or merely curiously shaped pieces of metal or wood, these bits and pieces once in common use in ordinary homes are part of the history of rural life. For fifteen years readers of the Rescuing The Past feature in The Countryman have described their finds have been identified and discussed, and here is a selection, with illustrations, of the more interesting objects included. They range from watering irons, knitting sheaths, scoops and moulds from the cottage kitchen, to the rumbler bells made for horses’ harnesses, pewter bottles used for dosing cattle, farm workers’ hand tools such as bird-scarers or tree-blazers, regional building tools and the equipment used for village brewing. Some of the tools must have been made in some quantities at one time: others seem to have been designed by individual craftsmen for a specific reed.
Ann Cripps (nee Farwell) was for twenty years a member of the editorial staff of The Countryman. An Assistant Editor with special responsibility for crafts, gardening and book reviewing, she compiled the very popular Rescuing The Past feature in consultation with the Museum of English Rural Life at Reading. Her long standing interest in cottage bygones has brought her in touch with many national, regional and local museums throughout Britain, and many personal contacts with men and women who can recall the objects in use in their childhood homes.