I had the pleasure of going through some of my great grandfather’s old belongings this weekend. My wonderful neighbors joined with their pick up truck so we could take some of the more impressive larger items home. My great grandfather’s name is Gerardo Taddeo and if these records are accurate if was born in 1881 and died in 1970.
Among some amazingly well constructed old tools lied a few items of delight and surprise. I don’t have a photograph of this, the basement was really dark and I didn’t bring it home, but he had a full shoe shine box. Being Italian this doesn’t surprise me and reminds me of a Goodfellas scene. He had a full wine press setup in the basement. The markings on the main press were, “C.H. & E.S. Goldberg, 585 Hudson St. New York City” as you can see in the banner photograph for this post. Research I have done so far has shown they were a woodenware company. I am still cleaning up the parts that the press included, so not everything is photographed yet. I will take more photos and do a post at another time when it is more complete.
Next we have a vintage iron stone grinder. This manual transmission, fixed gear, unit is pedal powered! That’s right — no carbon footprint when you are in need of some steel sharpening. The stone is in decent shape. Bearings are intact and this cycles fairly well. I am looking into how to properly sand and refinish this as I think it is beautiful. This unit doesn’t have a water tank like some stone grinders I have seen where the wheel is half submerged. Unfortunately the feet are in rotting a bit so I’ll need to come up with a solution here, too.
There were a ton of incredibly old mason jars of all sorts of shapes and sizes. All similar to the photo above in that they had the metal clasp to close them. I grabbed them all and intend to clean them up, put them to use, or put them on display. There were also a few pickling jars and other misc. stone ware that cleaned up real nice. I have almost no decorations in my house, these will do well to liven the places up nicely. Finally we have some of the old glass that held the wine. One had ‘wine’ in it still. Again if that obituary was correct and my great grandfather died in 1970 then this liquid had been kept in there for 46+ years. I was a bit scared to give it a try and ended up dumping it. Not sure if it could have been used for anything, maybe vinegar, but it smelled fantastic. My father took a whiff and it reminded him of when he was a teen and remembered his grandfather making wine in the basement.
Overall I am thankful my great aunt Jeanette allowed us to go through the old tools and salvage what we could. I am proud to keep these items in the family! Thank you again to my wonderful neighbors for their help. I couldn’t have done it without them. Thoughts? Questions? Comments on anything I have photographed here. Let me know below!