Vintage (1700's-1800's?) axe head identification

Joined
Sep 6, 2019
Messages
1
Hi.

I found this axe head while metal detecting on a property, in Connecticut, that dates to 1754. I do not know anything about axe heads at all, so hopefully someone can give me some more information. I have been scouring the internet for information, but unfortunately I have not found anything about axe heads with what appears to be a butt-seam?

The axe head is about 6.5 inches long. The butt side is ~3.25inches. It weighs about 3lbs 2oz. The axe head shape is what appears to be a "Connecticut" shape.

The pictures were taken after a 2-day vinegar soak and brass brush scrubbing.

Can anyone help id it's age, style, etc. Any suggestions for restoration? Any and all help very much appreciated.

Thanks for the help!
Todd
CnGB11U.jpg
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XzYu5iA.jpg
xQfEqty.jpg
I5YZqJv.jpg
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2009
Messages
416
Greetings from Minnesota tough turtle and welcome to the forum. You know that finding this axe head and it being your first post here we will be looking for big things from you ... right? I am useless to you in finding any information on your new axe, but, congratulations on a wonderful metal detecting find! I am sure others much more knowledgeable than I will be here shortly that can add to some insight into what it is that you have found.
 
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
1,871
Hi.

I found this axe head while metal detecting on a property, in Connecticut, that dates to 1754. I do not know anything about axe heads at all, so hopefully someone can give me some more information. I have been scouring the internet for information, but unfortunately I have not found anything about axe heads with what appears to be a butt-seam?

The axe head is about 6.5 inches long. The butt side is ~3.25inches. It weighs about 3lbs 2oz. The axe head shape is what appears to be a "Connecticut" shape.

The pictures were taken after a 2-day vinegar soak and brass brush scrubbing.

Can anyone help id it's age, style, etc. Any suggestions for restoration? Any and all help very much appreciated.

Thanks for the help!
Todd
CnGB11U.jpg
FMn4XUz.jpg
XzYu5iA.jpg
xQfEqty.jpg
I5YZqJv.jpg
Great find! It's always neat to find something cool! Dating an axe by its construction is really only guess work.
Can you take a photo of the top and bottom of the cutting edge? Specifically looking for where the dissimilar steels meet. That will help some.
 
Joined
Dec 20, 2015
Messages
1,661
Todd,hi.
On your photos,can you see the darker portion around the edge,that ends in a semicircular boundary?
That is the hardenable edge-steel wrapped around the iron core.
There's also,possibly,a similar steel plate welded on the "butt",or poll,of that axehead.
The edge-steeling technique place this tool in the end of 19th-beginning/middle of 20th century,so it's a rather a "modern" tool,(the kind many folks on here collect and are Very knowledgeable about).
Similarly the eye appears to be of a more modern,still current today form.
The crack along the poll can possibly be a weld-seam that failed(someaxes were indeed put together like that),but judging by the jaggedness of the crack-line i'd say that it's more likely just a failure of metal caused by the rotting handle stump freezing and expanding.
(similar to a Connie being discussed in a recent thread where just such crack was discussed,probably precipitated by a nick/groove along the inside of poll left there after the manufacturer slitted and drifted the eye to shape).

Identification of artefacts is NOT done based on photos on internet:)
but chances are these are remnants of a decent,somewhat worn,early 20th c. American axe.

For preservation you'd have to seek specialists' advice,but keeping it meanwhile in distilled water is helpful,making it easier to stabilize what metal's left when/if it should ever come to that.
 

Hickory n steel

Gold Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2016
Messages
16,938
Based on the teardrop eye shape my guess would be that this seemingly Connecticut pattern axe head is probably not nearly that old.
I do not know when the teardrop eye came to be but it is well known that a much narrower non tear drop eye shape came before it.

I'm not a historian or expert by any means, and s is just what I've gleaned from surfing the internet and more specifically this very forum.
 
Joined
Jul 25, 2017
Messages
2,300
Hi.

I found this axe head while metal detecting on a property, in Connecticut, that dates to 1754. I do not know anything about axe heads at all, so hopefully someone can give me some more information. I have been scouring the internet for information, but unfortunately I have not found anything about axe heads with what appears to be a butt-seam?

The axe head is about 6.5 inches long. The butt side is ~3.25inches. It weighs about 3lbs 2oz. The axe head shape is what appears to be a "Connecticut" shape.

The pictures were taken after a 2-day vinegar soak and brass brush scrubbing.

Can anyone help id it's age, style, etc. Any suggestions for restoration? Any and all help very much appreciated.

Thanks for the help!
Todd
CnGB11U.jpg
FMn4XUz.jpg
XzYu5iA.jpg
xQfEqty.jpg
I5YZqJv.jpg

My son found a Collins Legitimus Connecticut buried in the wooded part of the yard here. I am also in CT. The property here was all farm and tobacco prior to the 1930's. The Legitimus my son found, probably dates to the 1950's to early 1960's when one of my uncles probably grabbed it new from my grandfathers hardware store and left it where he was chopping down the proverbial cherry tree :D

Yours has been in the ground a little longer i would fair to guess:cool:
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2012
Messages
13,215
The poll looks like a failed forge weld and not just a frost crack. Without the forge weld the frost crack would be on the eye itself. The mushrooming rules out the possibility that it once had a high carbon poll cap. So the poll was simply low carbon steel welded to low carbon steel. That's a weld likely to fail. And frost in a rotten handle was probably the mechanism that caused it.
 
Joined
Jun 29, 2022
Messages
1
I know this is a bit old of a thread but I just found an axe head metal detecting as well. It’s on our farm in Wisconsin. Found it next to a tree about 6-7” down beneath some roofs about the diameter of a quarter. I’m soaking it now and have a bit more clarity coming. It does have a different color band along the edge of the blade. Anyone have an idea of age?

https://flic.kr/p/2nv6VM3 https://flic.kr/p/2nv5FTY https://flic.kr/p/2nv6VKj
Thanks!
Z
 
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