The Virtual Corkscrew Museum's Daily Newspaper
Tuesday, July 29, 2003
Walker's Elk Horn Corkscrew
Wirtz, Virginia - This past Saturday we ran the story of Kenn Cameron's fabulous Walker corkscrew find. Reader Paul Luchsinger submitted this report on his Walker find:
Erie, Pennsylvania - Here are two photos of another large corkscrew.
I completed the purchase of this large Walker corkscrew in mid-June from a dealer friend in Buffalo, New York who in turn bought it at an estate sale in Northeast, Pennsylvania (about 15 miles northeast of Erie, Pennsylvania, in late 2002. He teased me about selling it for about 6 months as the price climbed higher--he knew that it was a good piece.
As a reference point, Northeast Pennsylvania was the location of one of Walker Manufacturing Company's larger plants and when the company finally closed in the early 1900s, Welch's Grape Juice Company bought the facility and it is now the world's largest grape juice processing facility--apropos for the beginning of a corkscrew and other tools manufacturer.
The handle is an elk horn of 30" length on the curve, the steel shaft (corkscrew) is 10" and the bell is 2.5" in diameter. There were elk herds in Pennsylvania in the early 1900s so that is the likely source of the handle (sorry no elephants).
In the photo of Edwin Walker, there appears to be a horn handled corkscrew in the background but it appears to have a silver cap on the end. My corkscrew has no silver on either end, but just the horn as cut from the lucky elk.
The "gravel background" photo shows the large Walker, a small Walker for size comparison and to show the true treasure in the photo: a bottle of Luchsinger's Legend 2001 NorthCoast Pennsylvania Collage--a special blend from Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes grown on the North Coast of Pennsylvania, aka Lake Erie.
It is interesting that 2 corkscrews of this size would surface: Kenn Cameron's elephant tusk corkscrew in July and this elk horn variety a few months earlier and both from within a few miles of Erie, Pennsylvnia. And...I travel through Erie, PA about 8-10 times per year and never have found a significant Walker corkscrew in any of the antique shop searches.
©2003 Don Bull, Editor