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V4 2001 INDEX       E-SYLUM ARCHIVE




The E-Sylum:  Volume 4, Number 13, March 25, 2001, Article 10

WHEN FORKS WERE RARE 

   In the October 25, 1999 issue of The E-Sylum (v2#43), 
   we reviewed a book by Henry Petroski on the history and 
   evolution of the bookshelf - "The Book on the Bookshelf". 
   Another of Petrowski's books is "The Evolution of Useful 
   Things: How Everyday Artifacts - from Forks and Pins to 
   Paper Clips and Zippers - Came to Be As They Are." 
   (1992) 

   The following passage may be of some interest to collectors 
   and researchers of colonial-era numismatics.  ".. the fork 
   was a rare item in colonial America.  According to one 
   description of everyday life in the Massachusetts Bay 
   Colony, the first and only fork in the earliest days, carefully 
   preserved in its case, had been brought over in 1630 by 
   Governor Winthrop.  In seventeenth century America, 
   "knives, spoons, and fingers, with plenty of napery, met the 
   demands of table manners."  (p16, First Vintage Books 
   Edition, 1994, taken from Dow, George, "Every Day Life 
   in the Massachusets Bay Colony", 1935) 

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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