Or at least it did based on all the workbenches and tool chests I saw at a Cincinnati antique mall.

I recently spent a week in the Cincinnati area for Woodworking in America and then a pier table class at 360 Woodworking. Through strategic planning and determination I managed to carve out some time to explore Ohio’s past. The largest antique mall in the area stays open until 9:00 PM making this much easier.

First bench I came across is this large conventional bench:


Large bench with a face vise, a big tail vise and a drawer. Poodle not included.


Detail of the tail vise. I’m not sure the dogs (if they are dogs) are original.

A bit down the same row is this bench of the same type but with a more formal presentation:


City cousin to the first bench more primitive nature.

Not everyone needs the 8′ dreadnought workbench and there is bench for them as well.


This bench is for the woodworker of more modest means and needs.


With a leg vise.

Let us not ignore the tinker or casual user:


A lightweight commercial(?) bench.

A view of the top show an odd row of dog holes and the ever controversial tool tray:


I wonder if the vise once lived on the left side of the bench.

Even lighter is this small, metal framed bench:


No dog holes, no vises but drawers.

This one qualifies more as a work table than a bench but still supports work:


Probably fated to end its life as a kitchen island.

Most interesting of all is this English pattern workbench:


First one of these I’ve seen in the wild.


There was a leg vise but it’s gone. You could put it back…


There was also a large selection of tool boxes and chest:


There is a tool chest in amongst the clutter.


Of the highest quality because there be dovetails.

Or this one in the ever popular orange:


A really big chest.


OK, there are dovetails. I like dovetails.

The big problem with looking at tool chests at antique malls is that they tend to be buried under stuff. They provide horizontal surfaces on which to pile more stuff. Dealers really like to stuff their booths with stuff. It requires more patience than I have to check out the interiors because of all the stuff you need to move. If I needed a tool chest or were a better documentarian, I would do what must be done. But neither is the case.

Occasionally the chest is buried beneath something more interesting, like this Pocket Instamatic:


A 1920’s German view camera. Film may or may not be available. As far as I know, no digital back is available. Tripod not included.


Tons of tools there. Wooden bodied planes. Metal planes. Frame saws of all types and sizes. Too many to bother taking pictures. We’ve seen them all before. There was one tool that I’m not sure if is commercial or improvised:


A float with handle and knob.


Once you have the tools, the chest and bench, you need wood and fasteners. For wood you have to look elsewhere but they do have fasteners.


An assortment, as it where.

Go check out some antiques while they’re still there. Mid-century modern is coming. And collectibles. Chalk paint and other abominations.