What on earth is in the basement today?
Stuff made out of metal. Specifically, stuff that I think was made in a "casting process." What do I know about this process? Practically nothing. But my dad knows a lot.
I know this is a flower frog. You put it in the bottom of a vase or bowl and it helps your flowers stay arranged. I know that.
But all I know about metals and metal casting is that I usually can spot something that has been cast. Because, well, I've hung out with my dad all my life. And, if this were a sixth grade paper, I would describe his job as "my dad designs systems to make castings." How do I know this? Because he told me.
One of my early memories of my dad at work is visiting a foundry in Ohio with him when I was 6 or 7.
Not this foundry.
They were pouring molten metal that day and everything was HUGE and there was fire and sparks. It was pretty cool.
In the wintertime, after work, I used to drive home past A. Finkl & Sons in Chicago because you could see in the open doors...fire, sparks, molten metal...the whole thing. Still cool 25+ years later.
Here are some bells made in the casting process:
The first two look like sand castings. The third...could be a wax cast or a sand cast with the edges filed off and buffed for smoothness. I know those bells of Sarna were taken from fraternity to fraternity to secure buyers in the 1920's. India was still a mystery to the U.S. then. And the casting process, goes back to 4000-3000 B.C. It you look closely, the dust on the bell in the second picture probably also dates to that era.
I don't know if this will work, but here is a newsclip from the 1930's-40's (?) illustrating the importance of foundries. You should have Windows Media Player.
Okay, we're back to researching and tagging soon :( Groan. I need this stage to end finally!