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The Harmony Society at Old Economy Village used clamps to make furniture, but (to the best of my knowledge) did not sell them. I first visited the museum, and noticed a number of clamps in the Cabinet Shop. (I later discovered that there were more in storage. Very exciting!)

I contacted the curator, Sarah Buffington; told her of my interests, and asked if I could study them, and possibly determine their history. She replied:

I've attached a picture of some of the clamps' makers marks. As for the two that have possible people attached to them, this is what I can say: There were no people with the initials H.I. - no one with the last name beginning with I. However, I think sometimes J's were written as I's. If that were the case, there was a cabinetmaker here named Georg Adam Jung (born 1761, left the Society in 1832). His name does not start with H, but his son's did. His name was Jakob Heinrich Jung (born 1801, withdrew in 1831). Many German people were called by their middle names, and their first names were considered their Christian names, although they usually weren't called by that name. We don't know if Heinrich apprenticed with his father, but that is the best possibility that I have. I suspect the date was when he made the clamp - Sept. 2, 1822. The other name, O. Schaal, is not found either, although there were Schaal members of the Harmony Society. Perhaps "O." stands for something else, like "made by" or something else in German. We have many other tools in the collection that are marked with dates or people's names. As for the numbers on the tools, they could stand for anything. Perhaps they numbered the clamps to keep tabs on them. There are some pieces of furniture that were also numbered. Perhaps the numbers correlate the parts with each other, in case they were taken apart.
I'm not sure why some of the clamps were in storage and others in the cabinet shop. Perhaps there were too many tools to have them all out. It's going to be awhile before the tools are unpacked. It is possible to find those boxes and unpack them, if someone were to find which boxes they were packed in on the packing lists. We are quickly getting into the exhibit season at Old Economy, and I will not have time to work in the collections for projects like this until at least May. I will also be on extended leave in January and February.
There is a book with the Harmonists all listed in it, entitled "George Rapp's Disciples, Pioneers and Heirs: A Register of the Harmonists in America," compiled by Karl J.R. Arndt. It is offered for sale in our gift shop, and there are copies in our library. The furniture book has not yet been published, but we are hoping it will be by Christmas. In order to use photographs of tools in the collection, we require a use agreement to be signed, for whatever purpose that they are used for. We can work on details of publishing later. I will need to check into all of the details with the PHMC.
Take care,
Sarah Buffington
Old Economy Village

In my subsequent visit, I was given access to approximately 30 examples of clamps made and used at Old Economy Village, and another 7 bought from clamp makers. See owned for more details.

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