Farm Tools

Overview

The first settlers used an assortment of hand tools to do daily tasks and chores on the homestead including chopping wood, building their home and barn, farming, and gardening.

Axe

The axe was a very important tool. With an axe, the homesteader built a home, chopped firewood, chopped down trees, and cleared the land.

Axe

A settler has just finished chopping wood using an axe.

Pickaxe, Hoe, Spade

A pickaxe, hoe, and spade (shovel) were used for digging and turning over the soil.

Pickaxe

Hoe

Spade

Pitchfork

A pitchfork was used to gather up the hay or grain into piles.

Pitchfork

Wooden Rake

A wooden rake was used to level the soil.

These settlers are pictured using a wooden rake, a pitchfork, and a broom.

Wooden Rake

Cradle Scythe

Grain or hay was cut with a scythe or a sickle and left to dry in the sun. A cradle scythe (also called a hand cradle) cut the hay and dropped the hay in piles.

This family has taken supper out to those harvesting in the fields. This settler is carrying a cradle scythe.

Cradle Scythe

Farmers using a cradle scythe to harvest their crop.

Flail

A flail was used to separate the seeds from the rest of the plant.

Flail

Doukhobor farmers threshing the first grain harvest in 1899.

A farmer is using a flail to separate grain from the straw.