Dating old screws

The Model T car made by the Ford Motor Company (one of Robertson's first customers) used over seven hundred Robertson screws.

In the early 1930s, the Phillips head screw was invented by Henry Phillips.

The type of dovetailed joint, especially in drawers, reveals much about furniture construction and dating.

With just a little study of these examples, it is easy to spot true hand made construction vs. The name dovetail comes from the appearance of the joint, resembling the triangle shape of a bird's tail.

Tiny angled saw cuts were followed by careful cutting by a sharpened chisel on both sides to avoid splintering.

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A nail may not be a noticeable style feature, but looking at them carefully can help you authenticate the age of a primitive or antique furniture piece before you buy.

Furniture, I believe, is easier to judge than other antiques.

This is because each piece over the years has acquired certain signs of age and use which cannot be successfully faked.

Individual taste is, of course, the prime factor in choosing the type of antique one collects, but in order that the reader may have a sort of yardstick for determining the merits or defects of a particular piece, we shall endeavor on this page to give him some concrete and practical points on judging the antiques in each of these categories.

These should help him to decide whether a chair, table or case piece is in original condition; whether it has been restored and reconditioned within proper limits, or has been so extensively reworked as to be of little value as an antique; and finally, whether it is a deliberate fake or just a copy of an old piece, with no claim to being an antique.

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