Memory Lane: The Workbench

Workbench Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock

When I was a boy, my father, my grandpa, my uncles, and our neighbors all had workbenches, with lots and lots of tools. Most of them were in the basement, but some of them were in the garage. Ours was always down below.

I’m sure some of you have workbenches–but at one time, virtually every household with a father in it had one. My father tinkered with radios and built shelves and cabinets as needed. Uncle Ferdie invented things–had dozens of patents. Grandpa made toys for us kids. I haven’t collected evidence for it, but I think people used to be a lot handier than they are now. Heck, I used to be a lot handier than I am now.

We don’t have a workbench. Living in an apartment, where would we put it? But there was something magical, on a rainy Saturday, in watching my father shave lumber with his jack-plane, drill holes, tap nails into place, and wind up making something we could use.

Ah! You should’ve seen him and Ferdie tackle a failed TV set. But that’s another story.

6 comments on “Memory Lane: The Workbench

  1. I grew up in NYC, where just about everyone I knew lived in apartments. No room for workbenches in apartments!

    1. You should’ve seen all the tools they had. Grandpa must’ve had a thousand hand tools stored in his cellar–not counting the ones he had stored in his old chicken coop.

  2. Grr, I accidentally forgot to click the “follow” buttons, so I have to add another comment in order to re-follow.

  3. These are very familiar to me. My son, where I live now, has a lot of work bench space in his shop. We always had one everywhere we lived. Heck, I even had two aunts on my Dad’s side who built buildings, so they had work benches too.

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