(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved. Contact us for information about using this image.
Taken in Deerfield, Massachusetts, in the very early years of the 20th century, the Allen Sisters photograph illustrates the care given a piece of farm equipment to allow it to function most efficiently. The scythe, a long blade with handle attached at a right angle, must be razor-sharp so that, when swung in an arc, it will cut the grain or the brush deftly. The bearded man dressed in work clothes is using a whetstone to sharpen the blade of his scythe. He is set to cut the grass in the apple orchard, illustrating the multiple use of a piece of land in this hand-tool era.