Do you know what this mysterious tool from the Landis Valley Farm and Village Museum collection was used for?

We don’t have the exact dimensions of the instrument, but it appears the top is just over 2 feet across.

Send your guess to Mary Ellen Wright at features@lnpnews.comwith “Antique Toolbox” in the subject line, or mail to Mary Ellen Wright/Antique Toolbox, LNP Media Group, PO Box 1328, Lancaster, PA 17608-1328.

Important: Please include your full name and the city you live in. Guesses must be made by Monday, October 17. We will feature the correct answer in LNP and on LancasterOnline on Friday 28 October.

Last Month’s Tool: Cigar Box Cutter

A few of our readers knew that last month’s mystery tool from the Landis Valley Farm and Country Museum collection was a cigar cutter.

Jennifer Royer, curator of the Landis Valley Farm and Country Museum, says the cutter is labeled “Minkoff Leaf Tobacco Company, Lancaster, PA.”

Minkoff Leaf Tobacco Co. was an importer, packer and dealer of all types of leaf tobacco, says Royer.

Reader Elizabeth Gannion of Strasburg notes that the company was located at 226 E. Grant St. in Lancaster.

Cigar box cutters, which came in a variety of shapes, were originally used in the latter half of the 19th century to cut stamps and other labels on cigar boxes, and to lift the nail that held the box closed. Many cuttings—such as Landis Valley—had small notches for this purpose.


• Bainbridge: Tom Ballmer.

• Lancaster: John Esbenscheid.

• Landisville: Linda Varner.

• New Holland: Susan Leary.

• Perkiomenville: Ben Hoffman.

• Quarryville: Bonnie Rohrer.

Best guesses: A tool for cleaning a tobacco pipe, a tool for flattening or peeling tobacco leaves.

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