Early Woodworking Machinery


H.B. Smith Mortising Machine

The 2018 Early American Industries Association Annual Meeting is in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, this year, and after a blue-sky day of visiting the Moravian Museum and sites, the Kemerer Museum and Bethlehem Steel, this evening we met up at the National Museum of Industrial History for ice cream and a private tour. (The museum is in a beautifully restored building on the Bethlehem Steel site.)

It is no surprise that I was most enchanted with the museum’s incredible collection of early woodworking machinery (though the printing collection runs a close second).

Below are just a few photos of this gorgeous equipment. If you like “old arn,” this museum is a must see.


C.B. Rogers No. 1 Dual Shaper

CB Rogers No. 6 TenonMachine

C.B. Rogers No. 6 Tenon Machine


Barnes Router Table


Barnes Lathe


Barnes Scrollsaw


Barnes Ripsaw



About fitz

Woodworker, writer, editor, teacher, ailurophile, Shakespearean. Will write for air-dried walnut.
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10 Responses to Early Woodworking Machinery

  1. Gosh! Those Barneses!! Thanks for posting – what a great tour!

  2. Jillian Ramsay Stern says:

    Proof that a utilitarian object has its own inherent beauty. In this case they could easily be in an art museum. The ornamentation shows that our ancestors, in times past and long ago, had the same pride of tools and craftsmanship, as we now have, It is nice to feel a relationship with a tradition that stretches back through centuries.
    Thanks for the good photos.

  3. nrhiller says:

    Thanks for sharing these pictures. Gorgeous stuff.

  4. This is just amazing! Thank you for sharing these and giving me another museum to add to my ever-growing list of ones to visit.

  5. johncashman73 says:

    That shaper is a work of art. Holy crap.
    I have no desire to work on a treadle-powered table saw.

  6. I’d love to know just how fast you have to pedal to properly get the Barnes Router Table to work cleanly… seems like it would be a lot, even with the gear sizes it has.

  7. SSteve says:

    It is every steampunk’s dream shop. Just beautiful. I never thought about how woodworking used to be serious aerobic exercise.

  8. Kyle Barton says:

    Cool! Love the those machines. They are truly works of art and function.

  9. Ellustar says:

    Reblogged this on SEO.

  10. Pingback: WOODWORKING WEDNESDAY —Early Woodworking Machinery — Rude Mechanicals Press Blog – Emory Farm

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