The year saw the beginning of what was to become one of the largest axe and edge tool manufacturers in the country as well as the world. The exact details of how the company started may not have been recorded in detail for posterity but it seems that the enterprise started when three men related as brothers and cousins got together and decided to go into business as partners. That business, located in the Farmington Valley in Connecticut, was considered to be a supplier of a superior grade of iron. William Wells had two cousins who were blacksmiths, or directly involved in blacksmithing in the same general area. The names of his cousins were Samuel W. Collins and David C. They were brothers.
During his involvement with the Colt Firearms Co. Root became a close associate of Samuel Colt and upon the death of Colt inColt's widow appointed Root president of the company.
Mar 10, Dating Collins Axe heads? Thread starter jab; Start date Mar 10, ; jab Tracker. Joined Jan 4, Messages 31 Likes 6. Mar 10, I gotta say, axes are way easier to handle than woman. Plus they just get me better. PMSteve Old Timey Outdoorsman. Supporter. Joined Oct 7, Messages 9, Likes 15, Axes with the E. K. ROOT marking may have been made prior to his employment with Collins or, like in a number of cases, Collins may have marked some axes with the name E. K. ROOT as a tribute to Root considering he was an important individual associated with the company. Collins Axe Drop Forged, Heat Treated, Single Bit /2 Lb. Jersey 36 " out of 5 stars 5. Link Handles Single Bit Curved Grip Axe Handle for 3 to 5 lb. Axes and Bush Hooks, 36" Length, Wax Finish, Grade A. out of 5 stars $ $ Get it as soon as Mon, Jul
Root continued in that position until he died in at the age of Axes with the E. ROOT marking may have been made prior to his employment with Collins or, like in a number of cases, Collins may have marked some axes with the name E.
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ROOT as a tribute to Root considering he was an important individual associated with the company. As of this writing no paper labels are known extant that included Root's full name. Marking used on some broad axes. Marking used on some early Collins axes. Another marking used on some early Collins axes.
Antique Axes and Hatchets. Related Categories. Auction Alerts. Perhaps no tools are more closely linked to the founding of America than the axe and its smaller sibling, the hatchet. Hand-forged axes of cast iron with heads weighing seven pounds were swung by pioneers and Colonists, who used the versatile tool to clear land for crops and build. Vintage COLLINS Double Bit Axe, Head ONLY 4 Lb. without Handle (NO HANDLE) Vintage 3 1/2 lb COLLINS Single Bit Axe on ORIGINAL /2" Solid Hickory Handle $ Jan 18, I've had 3 Collins and all had the rectangle stamp like yours The military knife guys might know more They LOVE Collins axes. Jan 13, #5. burddogg. Jul 9, thanks trent. I can't believe with the historical significance of this American company, there isn't more info to be had.
Facsimile of label used in the s. The paper frequently turned deep purple in color over time. Facsimile of marking accompanying U.
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Trademark Registration No. KIng label specifically for axes. Paper labels bearing the name R. Many of the labels were applied to agricultural implements, other earth working tools and edge tools in general as well as axes.
The brand was used on domestic as well as exported tools.
The second known registration was No. The Statement for each noted that the trademark had been used since Januarythe month following the submission of the application.
The Statements were substantially the same but the locations of the company varied. The lower numbered trademark indicated The Collins Company was in Collinsville while the next one indicated the company was in Canton.
Technically both were correct as Collinsville is in the township of Canton.
Neither of the earlier trademark registrations included graphics. The Statement indicated such hardware articles were in Class 23, Cutlery, machinery, and tools and parts thereof with axes, hatchets and adzes leading the list. The third registration was No. It included a graphic of a label on which the name, a picture of an oak tree and the other specified wording was included.
That registration was renewed on Nov. It was designated as No.
The registration statement specified that the brand had been used in paper label form as well as in stampings directly on the goods since Early labels specifically for axes. Label used after the turn of the century, possibly around Facsimile of early paper label.
Representation of the graphic that accompanied Registration No. Normal stamping on left.
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The mark usually appeared as a single stamping. Facsimiles of paper labels with slight variations in wording and line work that were used over the years. A number of labels have been observed that are representative of substantially the same label. The significant differences were the variations in colors. A number of labels have been observed that are representative of substantially the same brand. The significant differences was the variations in colors.
Trademark No. Renewed Aug. Stampings used on some axes.
They were also used in addition to paper labels on some single bit axes. Later representations included a cuffed bent arm. Additional comments and information related to Legitimus are included with. Collins Company Pt. The significance of the name Charter Oak is said to have had been associated with an oak tree that had been planted near the present site of Hartford, Connecticut. The tree is said to have been planed by a number of Indians representing the local tribes.
The purpose of the planting was to signify an agreement for peace among those tribes. Years later after the tree had grown and sustained the rigors of time and weather it developed a void or hollow area within its trunk.
That hollow was used to hide the original State Charter during the conflict between those who wanted the commonwealth to remain a colony belonging to England and those seeking to provide independence for the colonies. The Charter was the document that granted Connecticut its sovereignty and it being hidden in the old oak prevented those that wished to destroy it from finding it.
Brand markings reportedly used on some straight bladed cutlery such as machetes.
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Introduced in and registered as Trademark No. Label believed to have been used before Stampings used in s and s. There were other modified designs that appeared on other goods especially edge tools that were exported. These representations are of some designs that appeared as part of the trademark on some registration papers.
Around the middle of the nineteenth century the problem became untenable as far as The Collins Co. It seems the inferior quality of the counterfeit axes was impacting on the Collins reputation.
Some were actually duplicating the markings exactly as Collins was marking their goods. The guilty parties were then exporting the goods, so marked, to various markets around the world.
Restoring a Valuable Vintage Collins Legitimus Axe
Quite possibly because of the expense of suiting all the businesses and individuals engaged in the illegal practice, Collins initiated a suit against a major perpetrator. The matter was heard by a Vice Chancellor who found in favor of Collins.
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It is understood that the judgement involved forfeiture of all profits from the illegally marked goods along with the destruction of any remaining goods so marked and that any and all improper labels and marking devices also be destroyed. Based on the judgement apparently Collins decided to hold off on suiting the remaining counterfeiters with the provision they cease the illegal practices.
That seemed to have worked in England and thereby saved The Collins Co. Reports have indicated that a similar practice was undertaken some years later by some German manufacturers but their efforts were squelched upon the threat of vigorous legal actions in the German courts.
Despite their legal efforts and the repeated judgments in their favor Collins discovered that apparently the problem continued to a lesser degree. A statement in The Collins Company catalog solicited information about such frauds and indicated that the information would be held in the strictest confidence.
The specific appearance of the markings are believed to have been stampings that looked very much like, if not identical to, the actual Collins Co. Apparently there were no labels involved in the marking of the counterfeit Collins axes. As a result of their experiences with counterfeiters and the like, in The Collins Co. The mark was registered in It consisted of an image of a crown with an arms holding a hammer located above the top of the crown.
It is interesting to note that the word Legitimus was not common in most dictionaries of the day or even those dated later for that matter. It is basically a Latin word that when translated can be interpreted as:. The word Legitimus was used not only on labels and as stampings on various goods that Collins made, it also commonly appeared in published advertisements, on signs, company stationery and in product catalogs in a number of languages.
The symbol was even chosen for the castings that were made as snow-catchers that were installed on the company office building in Collinsville. Quite possibly the most common place that the symbol was used was on labels; labels for the American market as well as numerous export markets.
Many of the original labels depicting the Legitimus symbol were embossed, a reference to which was even included along the edge of some labels along with the a notation that the label was genuine only if embossed and had been printed by the New York Bank Note Printing Co. Embossing is a process utilized in printing whereas certain areas are raised above the normal surface of the paper. This is accomplished by adding padding under the areas that will be raised and printing on paper that has been temporarily treated to stretch.
The earliest trademark reference found, Registration No. Over the years the combination of the arm, crown and hammer appears to have become the symbol most recognized as being associated with The Collins Company.
After Collins was acquired by the Mann Edge Tool Co. the label took on a new appearance without the inclusion of the Legitimus symbol. The design associated with axes made by Collins & Co. in Lewistown was included in the sale to Truper Herramientas in and by the early twenty-first century it became available in various hardware chains and big-box stores. I read this about the crown and arm logo on yesteryearstools (Collins part 2): "The more simplified version on the right was used on some axes in the s through the s". I think this may be the case for your axe. As I've stated before, I'm by no means an expert on Collins axes, so . Collins & Co. was founded by Samuel Collins in Connecticut in The shop started out with 8 employees and Collins' own business savvy. Within a decade, their shop expanded into a massive factory, with an entire town developing around the business. These axes were the biggest name in foresting back when all logging was done by hand.
The symbol, along with substantially the same wording used in the description, was again registered as No. That registration was issued on Nov. Republication was dated Aug. The markings were stamped, etched and or printed on labels. Other variations appeared in advertisements and on company stationary. The end result was recognition conveyed by a number of variations, many of which used individually while still others were adapted to be used in conjunction with other brands.
Although the crown, arm and hammer with or without with the word Legitimus was introduced five decades after Collins edge tools started to be made it appears that it became the most recognized and acceptable of the Collins markings.
Typical banner as used on labels and in advertisements printed in English. Examples of markings attributed to. Rufus S. Collins of Smiths Falls, Ontario. Examples of labels used on Collins made axes for English companies. Collins used a number of brands that were primarily associated with exported goods. The brands were on labels that were registered to Collins but only some of the labels indicated the axes were actually made by Collins.
Others may have been made and labeled for distribution by wholesalers or even as alternatives for customers who did not want to pay a premium for a Collins axe or other tool. There were a number of other axe manufacturing companies that used labels that had a similar appearance to the black and white labels that Collins used but those labels did not include the name Collins or any of the brands registered to Collins.
Jul 27, In mid-July we visited the remains of the Collins Company in Collinsville, Connecticut. In the late 's, the Collins Company was the largest integrated axe manufacturer in the world. Founder Samuel Collins' vision of a global edge tool company built on the banks of the Farmington River is still in evidence today. [Packing Shop and Bell Tower Building] Samuel, his brother David, and.
Earlier Legitimus labels had raised embossed lettering around the outer edges. Some were printed with different colored metallic inks. The number over the curved line indicates the style of a Spanish pattern of axe that was exported. NOTE: Collins used a variety of stamped markings many of which included a location.
Markings using Collinsville as the location. Facsimile of marking printed as it appeared in Registration No. The outdoor activity that became known as "auto-camping" appears to have started a few years prior to By the mid s it had become a major past time for thousands of motorists. In answer to the growing demands for certain necessities associated with auto-camping many hardware dealers sold smaller sized axes for cutting firewood and driving tent pegs.
This led to the manufacturer of axes with markings indicating they were actually intended for use as a "camp axe". Many were marked according and some even had the words "Auto-Camp Axe" marked on them. Many companies sold axes so marked and some included decorative designs to enhance the appearance of such axes. The popularity of side of the road and back-road auto-camping gave way to the wide spread introduction of motor camp grounds and motor courts as more and more families became involved in such activities.
The Auto-Camp axes and Sportsman's axes were not full sized axes if compared to chopping axes. Some were hatchet size while others were house axe size.
Fire axes were supplied by numerous axe manufacturers as well as many hardware distributors and fire equipment providers. Most fire axes varied somewhat in shape from those made by other makers but for the end purchaser distinguishing between one make and another was difficult.
The majority of fire axes were painted red and Collins chose to use white labels that stood out on the red background. Many Collins fire axes did not have a paper label and many that did also included a stamped marking indicating the manufacturer. On some axes that were identified only with a stamp, Collins used the Legitimus impression while on others they used the name Collins within a rectangular box.
Bytrip hammers were introduced to speed production; by they had built 35 houses for their growing workforce and renamed the town Colllinsville; by they were producing machetes and other edge tools for the South and Central American markets; in the company sold pikes to John Brown which were used in his attack on Harper's Ferry; by steam powered the trip hammers making swords and bayonets for the Union in the Civil War.
Twenty-eight of the original buildings remain of the original Collins factory. Many others were destroyed in a disastrous flood in The complex was laid out along the river with the casting operations to the south, the forging and finishing taking place in the center and the packing and shipping operations on the north side by the railroad depot.
The Collins Company made much more than axes. They made scythes, adzes, plows, bayonets, sabers and Bowie knives. For the South and Central American markets they made varieties of machetes and other specialty tools for fruit harvesting.
Axes were made in Michigan, Connecticut, Dayton and Yankee patterns. Double bit axes and hatchets were also in among the 1, edge tools in its product line. A devastating flood in destroyed one-third of the buildings at the Collins factory. It was a loss from which the company never really recovered.