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America on the Move
Collection Exhibition Themes
Hammer, used in railroad shop
Catalog #: 2002.0075.07, Accession #: 2002.0075
Currently on display
From the Smithsonian Collection
Used in locomotive repair work. This particular hammer was used by steam-locomotive master mechanic Kevin Bose at the Steamtown National Historic Site in Scranton, Pa., in the historic roundhouse there. The head dates from the 1960s, with a handle made by Mr. Bose.
Physical Description
12 1/2" L x 5" W x 1 1/2" D
Date Made:
Dates Used:
1840s - Today
Gift of Kevin Bose

Part of a small array of hand tools displayed in "America On The Move" - such tools were used in the inspection and repair of steam locomotives. Light repairs on steam locomotives were usually done in roundhouses at the many small locomotive terminals throughout a railroad's system; heavy repairs were done in a large, centralized repair shop serving the whole system (often referred to as the "Back Shop"). Most of these tools date from the early- to the mid-20th century, roughly 1900-1955.

This type of short, heavy hammer was used for pounding out stuck bolts, used with a punch to pound out rivets whose heads had been cut off, used to hammer on chisels, and used for all kinds of jobs with piping and for boiler and mechanical work.

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