Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 31
Like Tree147Likes

Thread: A very early WADE razor, plus new research.

  1. #1
    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pacifica, CA
    Posts
    1,999
    Thanked: 1444

    Default A very early WADE razor, plus new research.

    Years ago SRP member Eaglesgift contacted me and asked if I could restore his Robert Wade razor.

    I was just about to pull up stakes in Oceanside and move to the Bay Area, but I said, sure, as soon as I get moved in and have my workshop up and running.

    Well, that took me over a year, and by the time Id done it, he was having a real bad time of it. Another year passed.

    Last month, after a lot of false starts, he got the razors (there was also an I. Oxley to hone) from Thailand to me for restoration and honing.

    (This is not an advertisment that Im available to do restorations.)

    This is the razor as I received it.

    Name:  8BA65D69-376E-4C94-839B-5F0575D57727.jpg
Views: 261
Size:  56.9 KB

    Name:  DEF187B3-7D8B-4223-85ED-2EA19F9A4644.jpg
Views: 256
Size:  55.5 KB

    Name:  719AF17B-B242-4DA8-ADAF-AED5FCB5F7DF.jpg
Views: 256
Size:  58.8 KB

    Name:  5935EBA7-01E8-4B60-AF86-1D095ADBE4F8.jpg
Views: 256
Size:  55.1 KB

    Name:  A5EBE26F-4FBA-4D3A-A7AD-00ADBFDC4D5D.jpg
Views: 255
Size:  47.4 KB

    The scales were clearly patterned exactly on the original, but more interesting still, it had this wedge:

    Name:  3A0D9918-30DA-4CE7-A46C-7A369F8005A6.jpg
Views: 258
Size:  50.2 KB

    Wedges like this with the three extra holes Ive seen exclusively on razors from before 1805, which this categorically is not. So whoever put this poor thing back together (with steel pins, which killed my poor, crappy flush cutters) was using parts from older razors still. IE, this was almost certainly rescaled in the early 1800s.

    I ordered up some nice horn blanks from Masecraft and set about experimenting. My first thought was mockshell, but none of the transparent blanks I got had sufficient clariety and my experiments to bleach them were a total failure. So black scales it was to be.

    Next post: some groundbreaking new info on Robert Wade.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

  2. The Following 10 Users Say Thank You to Voidmonster For This Useful Post:

    Dieseld (10-04-2017), GabrielMartin (10-04-2017), Geezer (10-04-2017), Hirlau (10-04-2017), markbignosekelly (10-04-2017), MisterClean (10-04-2017), neehooya (10-04-2017), nicknbleeding (10-14-2017), Porl (10-04-2017), xiaotuzi (10-05-2017)

  3. #2
    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pacifica, CA
    Posts
    1,999
    Thanked: 1444

    Default

    The story about Robert Wade has evolved significantly since I started collecting razors.

    In the beginning, he was reported to be an American businessman who formed a partnership with the Butcher Brothers. That never sat well with me because he made razors with his own name on them before he formed W&B, and why on earth was an American businessman making razors in Sheffield?

    Rather than recount the evolution of the story, I’m just going to present the facts on the ground as I now know them to be (all backed up with copious records — I literally gave myself a research hangover yesterday).

    Robert Wade was born on June 4th, 1773. He was the eldest child of Robert and Eleanor Wade. His father was a very wealthy corn factor or maltster — someone who sold grain. He owned a significant plot of land on Church Street right off the main square.

    Robert’s Brother Richard was a bookseller, and his brother William was an attorny. Richard would go on to be one of the founding members of Wade, Wingfield and Rowbotham. But that’s another story.

    Robert Jr. was a member of the Sheffield Volunteer Militia and was quite well thought of.

    In 1781, he still lived with his father on Church street. Apart from the elder Wade being a guest at a Cutler’s Company Feast, his family had very little connection to the cutlery trade — they were farmers.

    In 1795, the elder Robert died and presumably left his considerable fortune to his sons.

    Then, sometime late in the first decade of 1800, he met Jane Hives, ne Powell, widow of Joseph Hives razor manufacturer, and daughter of Robert Powell and Mary Glossop, both steeped in the cutlery trade. She had inherited the little money Joseph amassed and, presumably, his workshop.

    Robert and Jane were married July 26th, 1809 at the Cathedral of Saint Peter. She had bourne and lost three chidlren with Joseph, and would not bear more for some time.

    Instead the two of them set up a razor business selling goods stamped WADE. This razor was one of them. The most likely date for their business is 1816, when the Cutler’s Company relaxed rules on who could stamp what on what. Prior to that, a manufacturer had to be at least a Journeyman in the Company. They had only two hearths in the workshop, but Robert had plenty of money to fund the operation.

    Some time between 1818 and 1821, Robert and Jane formed a partnership with William and Samuel Butcher to create Wade & Butcher. William & Samuel had lost their father very young. William was 9, Samuel 5. Within two years, Samuel was apprenticed to Richard Nayler, razor manufacturer.

    Almost immediately after forming the Wade & Butcher partnership, Robert and Jane had their children Robert (1819) and Jane Elizabeth (1823).

    Like so many other things for these people, the partnership did not last long.

    Robert Wade died on December 8th, 1825. Wade & Butcher ceased trading shortly after.

    Jane continued to sell R. Wade stamped razors from the factory on Arundel street, but she didn’t survive her husband long, and died July 14th, 1829.

    Their son Robert went to work for William & Samuel Butcher and they continued using the Wade & Butcher mark for decades, even though the partnership was long defunct.

    And that, friends, is a portion of the Robert Wade part of this story.

    Next up, the restoration.
    Last edited by Voidmonster; 10-04-2017 at 04:37 AM.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

  4. The Following 23 Users Say Thank You to Voidmonster For This Useful Post:

    782sirbrian (10-04-2017), ajkenne (10-04-2017), Dieseld (10-04-2017), DoctorNick (10-04-2017), drsmoothak (10-06-2017), eaglesgift (10-07-2017), GabrielMartin (10-04-2017), Geezer (10-04-2017), JazzDoc (10-19-2017), JimmyHAD (10-04-2017), jmercer (10-04-2017), JOB15 (10-04-2017), karlej (10-04-2017), markbignosekelly (10-04-2017), MisterClean (10-04-2017), neehooya (10-04-2017), nicknbleeding (10-04-2017), Porl (10-04-2017), ScienceGuy (10-04-2017), sharptonn (10-04-2017), Thug (10-04-2017), tintin (10-04-2017), xiaotuzi (10-05-2017)

  5. #3
    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pacifica, CA
    Posts
    1,999
    Thanked: 1444

    Default

    Name:  _DSC1464.jpg
Views: 238
Size:  25.5 KB

    Mark specifically requested only a light restore on the blade, mostly he wanted appropriate scales and a razor he could shave with.

    Name:  _DSC1465.jpg
Views: 237
Size:  27.6 KB

    Name:  _DSC1466.jpg
Views: 239
Size:  25.7 KB

    Name:  _DSC1467.jpg
Views: 239
Size:  34.7 KB

    Name:  _DSC1468.jpg
Views: 240
Size:  29.7 KB

    Name:  _DSC1470.jpg
Views: 237
Size:  29.7 KB

    It took a luscious edge.

    The pewter wedge is the one that was in the wood scales it came with, the washers are Ajkenne’s period replicas. The scales are patterned after typical 1810’s razor scales (I was able to simply use the old wood ones as an outline).

    It was impossible to tell what the original surface treatment of the metal was, but getting a good crocus finish would have required significantly more grinding and some of the tang stamp would have been lost, so I simply gave it a glaze finish and left it at that.
    Last edited by Voidmonster; 10-04-2017 at 04:03 PM.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

  6. The Following 21 Users Say Thank You to Voidmonster For This Useful Post:

    782sirbrian (10-04-2017), ajkenne (10-04-2017), BeJay (10-07-2017), BobH (10-04-2017), Dieseld (10-04-2017), drsmoothak (10-06-2017), eaglesgift (10-07-2017), ejmolitor37 (10-04-2017), GabrielMartin (10-04-2017), Geezer (10-04-2017), Hirlau (10-04-2017), JazzDoc (10-19-2017), markbignosekelly (10-04-2017), MisterClean (10-04-2017), Porl (10-04-2017), sashimi (10-07-2017), sharptonn (10-04-2017), Thug (10-04-2017), tintin (10-04-2017), Wolfpack34 (10-05-2017), xiaotuzi (10-05-2017)

  7. #4
    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pacifica, CA
    Posts
    1,999
    Thanked: 1444

    Default

    An addendum to the history of the Wade razors:

    For a long time the story was stuck on the fact that I could not find any records that recorded Jane's maiden name, and as such, she was just a wife.

    Having finally found the record of their wedding, the entire thing broke open, including a lot more information about Joseph Hives than I'd previously found. He only produced razors for 5 years before he died, and I feel pretty confident that Jane produced HIVES razors after his death.

    It's also not entirely clear that all of their children died. At least one definitely did, but two of them are born and then seem to generate no further records at all (though it's possible Joseph Jr. went on to be a criminal who was imprisoned for larceny in 1820, but there were a weirdly large number of Hiveses running around).

    Also: fun fact! Hives is the same name as Ives.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

  8. The Following 10 Users Say Thank You to Voidmonster For This Useful Post:

    Dieseld (10-04-2017), DoctorNick (10-04-2017), GabrielMartin (10-04-2017), Geezer (10-04-2017), Hirlau (10-04-2017), karlej (10-04-2017), markbignosekelly (10-04-2017), Martin103 (10-04-2017), ScienceGuy (10-04-2017), xiaotuzi (10-05-2017)

  9. #5
    Senior Member blabbermouth ejmolitor37's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Knoxville,IA
    Posts
    2,476
    Thanked: 683

    Default

    Very nice restore and information as always. Very tastefully brought back, great job Zak.
    Nothing is fool proof, to a sufficiently talented fool...

  10. The Following User Says Thank You to ejmolitor37 For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

  11. #6
    Maruka Shaman of West London JOB15's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,473
    Thanked: 145

    Default

    That Razor is gorgeous.
    Maruka Kingpin of England

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to JOB15 For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

  13. #7
    Senior Member GabrielMartin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Scotland, UK
    Posts
    182
    Thanked: 28

    Default

    Very nicely done Zak & fantastic research into the history of the razor.
    Your an inspiration!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Geezer and Voidmonster like this.

  14. The Following User Says Thank You to GabrielMartin For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

  15. #8
    Senior Member blabbermouth Thug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Posts
    2,449
    Thanked: 402

    Default

    Thanks for sharing the history and well done on a very tasteful restore!
    Geezer and Voidmonster like this.
    Tony
    https://mobro.co/tonyhuglin?mc=1

  16. The Following User Says Thank You to Thug For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

  17. #9
    Senior Member Porl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Penistone, just north of Sheffield UK
    Posts
    650
    Thanked: 117

    Default

    Great job on the razor and on the historical investigations too. Thank you so much for sharing this.
    Geezer and Voidmonster like this.
    Fact: Opinions are not the same as facts... Well, that's my opinion anyway

  18. The Following User Says Thank You to Porl For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

  19. #10
    Senior Member 782sirbrian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Sheffield, UK
    Posts
    104
    Thanked: 56

    Default

    Nice restore Zac, and some interesting history. Sheffield city must have been a quieter place than it is now... farming is a mile or 2 out now !!
    Hive's made some nice quality razors too.
    Geezer and Voidmonster like this.
    Regards Brian

  20. The Following User Says Thank You to 782sirbrian For This Useful Post:

    Voidmonster (10-04-2017)

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •