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Scovill Manufacturing Company, United States, subject
Digital Object
Baker Library, Harvard Business School, Historical Collections; Mss: 1412 :59 S432
Creation Date
ca. 1935
25 x 33 cm.
still image

Baker Library, Harvard Business School, Historical Collections: These images may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without permission in writing from the Historical Collections Department, Baker Library, Harvard Business School. Appointment necessary to consult collection.
Materials Type
gelatin silver process
workers ;  men ;  metalwork

One of a series of 11 photographs depicting the activities of the Scovill Manufacturing Company.

Provenance: Received on July 23, 1935 from the Scovill Manufacturing Company.

Inscription: On verso of image: "This man is a craftsman. More specifically a burnisher. Hand burnishing is a craft, the knowledge of which was handed down from father to son. The equipment, tools and technique of the operation have remained practically unchanged since Scovill first introduced the process to this country about 1820. ; Dated May 17, 1814, a letter still in our files documents the trial of this early American button manufacturer. It recites the failure of a Scovill emissary to England to procure skilled button burnisher--the emissary's narrow escape from arrest for trying to pursuade a burnisher to emigrate to Waterbury. Still stinging from the events of 1775-1882 (sic), Britain legislated strict bans on exportation of industrial talent across the Strait, hoping in this manner to retain her profitable export trade with the thirteen ex-colonies. ; Burnishing is still used by Scovill on a few special jobs."
Related Item
part of  Industrial Life Photograph Collection