It's difficult to overstate the role Eric Sloane played in how we appreciate American hand tools today. Sloane was a prolific author, artist, and tool collector, who in the 1950s and 1960s published books on colonial and early 19th century technologies. It was a subject few historians and antiquarians were giving attention to at the time. In the lead-up to the 1976 bicentennial, America was hungry to find meaning and purpose in its history, and it discovered it in Sloane's best-selling books — including 1964's groundbreaking "A Museum of Early American Tools."
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