Before the advent of automobiles and transport trucks in North
America, carriages, wagons and dray carts were the most popular
forms of transportation in areas that lacked easy access to
a railroad. All of these vehicles needed some form of manufactured
wheels. In fact, some early automobiles had wheels constructed
of wood in the same manner as the common wagon wheel.
has been observed that the great era of North American invention
and production occurred approximately from 18501900.
The device shown here is an example of innovative thought
of that era. The earliest production of wooden spokes for
wheels used a square tenon at both ends, but as demand overtook
supply, inventors developed gadgets, jigs and fixtures to
ease the reliance on the specialist trades. This device may
have been manufactured expressly for that purposeit
gave anyone who could turn a crank the ability to cut uniform