SOLD! Lee P in Dallas, TX 11/04/2021
Real 1800s vintage oak mantel beams like this are hard to beat. This piece is filled with original ax marks and worm trails. White oak naturally darkens over time. This piece hosts natural color that has simply been enhanced by a hard wax oil finish. All three sides show off hand-hewing (ax work). This is from back in the day when folks swung axes to make round logs into square beams. It is amazing to think that this is the real thing from early American settlers. We kiln treat beams as needed for bugs. We use a similar process to the one that they use in the European Union for wood pallet trade.
There’s an original round peg on the front as well. This peg would have been drilled and hammered through the mortise and tenon pocket to keep an adjoining beam in place. You’ll hear people often talk about “pegged barns.” That’s exactly what this is. The hewing on this mantel was crafted to a relatively smooth finish. I suspect that it was hewn with a couple of passes with an ax then followed with an adz.
There is also a “mortise pocket” on the bottom of the mantel beam. It was originally a rectangular hole where another beam came in and joined this one. We filled it with a matching side grain plug so that blends nicely. The pocket is just another element of the real history of this piece.
The original beam came from an old barn in Lowell, Wisconsin which is located about 50 miles NW of Madison, Wisconsin. The barn probably dated back to the mid- to late-1800s. The country was generally settled from East to West, so we see older places in Eastern Wisconsin than we do near our workshop near Minneapolis, Minnesota. This piece probably dates closer to the 1860s – 1870s. Count the rings and you might find that the tree was born in the 1700s.
We can cut this mantel shorter and refinish the ends for an additional for no additional cost.
It can be shipped anywhere in the lower 48 states via FedEx Gnd for $125
About the tag – HIRAM HAY is a playing card from a 1950s vintage set of Old Maid. These great old names are wonderful. Some of these old sets are not particularly politically correct by today’s standards.
Our website here only contains a small number of all of the mantels that we have in stock. Please contact us via email at email@example.com or call 612-281-9330 for a list of more mantels that are available. We are a small mom-and-pop shop and don’t usually find enough time to update this list. We have nearly 100 finished mantels and another almost 500 unfinished pieces in stock at any time that can be viewed with other links.