Sketch re: pitsawing

I got a nice note today, that I decided to post here…Maurice Pommier sent these words, and even better, this drawing:

Thank you for your blog,  BRAVO!!! It’s fine job!  I am french, my english is not good, so I drawn a little picture, it’s better way(perhaps!) to say.
Have a good day!”

Thank you, Maurice. Nice sketch. I have seen this sort of sawing in photographs before. there is no way to tell if the English did this in the seventeenth century. There are few depictions of English tradesmen from that time. There are documents making reference to “sawpits” – quite commonly. I would guess that sawing on trestles might be a part of shipbuilding in the 1600s…

French sawing



5 thoughts on “Sketch re: pitsawing

  1. What a wonderfully bucolic terminology: goat, goatherd and fox. I dunno Peter, being down there in the pit do you feel like you (the fox) are chasing or trying to outwit the top man (the goatherd)? I’d love to know whether the fellow who sent you those drawings can get dig up some etymology for those french terms.

  2. The sack on the head reminds me of how we used hessian sacks as temporary rain hoods on the farm. Essentially hold the sack upside down, take one corner and push it inside-out into the other corner. The sack is now half as wide as it was, but in the form of a hood. If it’s a really big sack, like for dried sugar beet, it just about makes a coat, that you can tie round your waist with bailer band (string).

  3. I loved the sketch, Maurice. And that is a great link, Heinrich. What a great website on the history of carpentry. Period drawings and photos, many videos, interviews with modern craftsmen. Really fascinating. Thanks!

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