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ReMaking History, Volume 1, 1st Edition by William Gurstelle

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Chapter 6 The Medieval Blacksmith and the Oliver 1300 CE

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Before the Industrial Revolution, most smaller cities and towns depended on local blacksmiths to make the iron tools and fasteners needed for daily life. Without a doubt, blacksmithing was hot, hard work. But the invention of the foot-operated hammer, or Oliver, made it possible for the smith to produce more items faster and with a bit less effort.

Constructing the Big Hammer of the Middle Ages

If you examine the nails that hold medieval European buildings together, you’ll find they are very different from the nails available at today’s hardware stores. Believe it or not, in many ...

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