Zenith Marshall Wells Hardware Double Bit

Discussion in 'Edged Tools' started by Mr. Tettnanger, Apr 1, 2014.

  1. Mr. Tettnanger

    Mr. Tettnanger Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I just got a double bit axe head in. I was looking for a 2-3lb head for a cruiser size double bit since I don't have one yet. I have a larger 36" double bit but wanted to try a smaller size.

    The head that I got in is stamped:

    Zenith

    Marshall Wells

    I figured that there were probably several manufacturers who manufactured them.

    Can anybody give me an idea on who made this head/brand for that hardware store chain?

    I was going to get a handle and fix it up, but after getting it, I think that I prefer a single bit boys axe in that size and weight catagory. For what I do, a single bit makes more sense.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014
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  2. BlueSasquatch

    BlueSasquatch Tracker

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    http://www.davistownmuseum.org/bioMarshallwells.html

    "This company began as a hardware store and progressed to making and marking its own tools. Most marked tools are from after 1900.

    M.W. CO.; M.W.H. CO.; MARSHALL WELLS HARDWARE CO.; ZENITH; MARSWELLS; HARTFORD; SUPERIOR; NORTHERN KING; DEFIANCE; VICTOR; FOUR-SQUARE; TWO-TONE; HANDYMAN

    According to Steve Crow, Olympia WA, member M-WTCA and PNTC:
    Hi, Marshall Wells Hardware Company was started in 1892 when A.M. Marshall bought controlling interest in Chapin Wells Hardware company in Duluth. He changed the name from the Chapin Wells Hardware Company to the Marshall Wells Hardware Company. I have the 20th anniversary issue of the Zenith magazine [1912] giving the 20 year history of the company. Sometime late in 1916 or early 1917 the the name was changed to just the Marshall Wells Company and the hardware part was dropped. I have a May 1917 Zenith magazine in which it states that the May 1917 cover which has the Marshall Wells Hardware Company name on the magazine cover was designed before the name change. The USA part of the company was sold and liquidated about 1958. "


    You interested in re-sale of that axe? What weight did it clock in at? Got any photos?


    Edit: I may have a single bit boys axe head if you are wanting a trade, looking for a specific pattern/weight/brand?
     
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  3. Mr. Tettnanger

    Mr. Tettnanger Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Thanks for that info Bluesasquatch!

    I'll get some photos and a weight tonight right after work-another hour or so.

    Here is a photo from the original ad/seller:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014
  4. BlueSasquatch

    BlueSasquatch Tracker

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    Looks like a real nice one, my guess is that you bought that from Hugo/axenaturally off e-bay. :dblthumb:


    What kind of axe head would you want in a trade?
     
  5. Mr. Tettnanger

    Mr. Tettnanger Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I had never heard of the Zenith brand before. I was interested to see it and find out more about it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. pommie

    pommie Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    it looks like the head is a 3.5lbs to me, from the sound of it you would be better looking for one of the smaller cruiser heads or a saddle axe if you are looking at a lighter axe to carry.

    thanks
     
  7. Mr. Tettnanger

    Mr. Tettnanger Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    It is about 2 3/4lbs.

    Here it is compared to my full size double bit.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Does anybody know who made these for Marshall Wells?
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2014
  8. Muleman77

    Muleman77 Hobbyist Hobbyist

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    It may have changed over the years, but I have a 4 lb zenith that is a true temper, marked on the reverse side. I believe it is newer than the axe you have there. At one point true temper had a lot of the trademarks under their umbrella.
     
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  9. CoryNinja

    CoryNinja Tinder Gatherer

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    Marshall-Wells never made their own axes. They were made by Kelly Axe MFG/Kelly Axe & Tool Co. That’s why the “M.W.H.CO. Hand Made” axes are exactly like the “Kelly Hand Made” embossed axes.
     
  10. CoryNinja

    CoryNinja Tinder Gatherer

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    That’s a Kelly. American Fork & Hoe bought Kelly and eventually changed the name of the company to True Temper in 1949... but the True Temper stamp was used much earlier than the 1949 name change, and Zeniths were Kelly’s.
     
  11. CoryNinja

    CoryNinja Tinder Gatherer

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    Zenith was a brand/model of Marshall Wells, Duluth, MN. Look up the history on the zenithcity.com website.
     
  12. CoryNinja

    CoryNinja Tinder Gatherer

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    Marshall-Wells never made their own axes. They were made by Kelly Axe MFG/Kelly Axe & Tool Co. That’s why the “M.W.H.CO. Hand Made” axes are exactly like the “Kelly Hand Made” embossed axes.
     

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