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Cold Chisel

Cold Chisel

Usage conditions apply
Used with a hammer (such as the hammer, Cat 2002.0075.07) steel cold chisels aided in cutting off small to medium size bolt heads and nuts, or small rivet heads. Though typical of cold chisels made since the 1920s, this chisel was probably made in the 1970s. The owner’s name “Paulson,” appears stamped in the side. The term “cold” chisel means that the metal being cut into was not usually heated. (Many times in a shop, things made of steel would be heated with a gas torch, often to a red heat, to facilitate removal of a part).
This tool is part of a collection of hand tools used in the inspection and repair of steam locomotives in the early- to the mid-20th century, roughly 1900-1955. Light repairs on steam locomotives were usually done in roundhouses at the many small locomotive terminals throughout a railroad's system; heavy repairs were done in a large, centralized repair shop serving the whole system (often referred to as the "Back Shop").
Object Name
Chisel, Cold
Date made
used date
overall: 6 1/2 in x 3/4 in x 3/4 in; 16.51 cm x 1.905 cm x 1.905 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Gift of National Park Service
See more items in
Work and Industry: Transportation, Railroad
America on the Move
America on The Move
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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