A LIVING HISTORY BLOG.

18TH CENTURY LIVING HISTORY IN AUSTRALIA.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

18th Century Childrens Tomahawks.

I have seen these tomahawks/axes refered to as toys, and they may well have been called toys back then, but I prefere to call them tools or a child's tomahawk/axe. These were and are real small sized tomawks/axes, and they were made for children. The round poll tomahawk below belonged to one of my sons, it was later passed down to my youngest son. All three boys learnt axemanship and tomahawk throwing with this tomahawk. There was another exactly like this one, but it got misslaid out in the forest somewhere! I will have to check out their old camp sites sometime just in case it is lying close by.

The other tomahawk is a spike poll type. I have no idea of its date of manufacture. It was given to me many years ago. According to "Fur Trade Tomahawks" http://furtradetomahawks.tripod.com a child's tomahawk/axe is distinguished by the head being less than 5 inches long from the poll to the cutting edge. Both these tomahawks below conform to that size. I am not claiming that these two tomahawks are exact copies of originals, just that they are the same size as a child's tomahawk.

Here you can see a comparison between my wife's belt axe and the smaller tomahawk/axe.
My youngest Son when only very young. You can just see the tomahawk helve sticking out by his left hand. The knife in his belt is real too.

Links to records and museum images.

5 comments:

Gorges Smythe said...

We'd be called bad parents for giving such things to kids now! Thank God I was raised when I was and not today!

Le Loup said...

Amen to that Gorges.
Keith.

Fimbulmyrk said...

Yap, agreed;-)...I was given a knife and made myself a tomahawk from rebar as a child, and no therapy in sight!;-) Boy, am I grateful for that...

Regards, Markus

Sara Seydak said...

Amazing! I bet it thought children more about responsability.

Le Loup said...

It all depends on the child. My three boys are very intellegent, but it did not stop them from being mischievous! Even so they were never dowright destructive and never once came to any harm in relation to using tomahawks and knives.
We used to teach young ones from about the age of 6 years in our group to throw the tomahawk, all were sensible and came to no harm.
But I used to teach martial arts many years ago, and I can remember banning one youngster from the club because he was outright mean and enjoyed hurting other kids. I would not have been handing him any sort of blade.
Keith.