A Most Unusual Plow Plane
plow plane made 77 years ago by 12-year-old Ed Tucker.
Provenance is the history or origin of an object, most often
associated with a work of art, but also associated with other
items. A confirmed and traceable provenance creates a story
that embellishes the historical or monetary value of any item.
Like the oft-repeated phrase in the real estate business "location,
location, location", verifiable provenance can be the most
important facet in telling a coherent story, especially if there
is a documentable history provided by a living person. Provenance
increases the worth of the piece. In fact, one of the many criteria
for inclusion in the Lee Valley collection is that there is
a good story associated with the tool. This plow plane certainly
has a good story and a most remarkable provenance. First we
will talk about the tool and then we will disclose its origins.
Last year, I was asked to assist Ed Tucker, then 88 years old,
in downsizing his personal workshop. During that process, Leonard
Lee, founder of Lee Valley Tools, paid a courtesy call to Ed.
While visiting, he asked about the European plow plane Ed had
displayed on a shelf. The answer was something nobody expected
— Ed calmly replied that he had made the plane in 1934,
at the age of 12. The story really starts here, as he then agreed
to donate it to the Lee Valley collection.