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Winder, Wool
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Title: Winder, Wool
Identifier: 980.12.1 a, b
Donor: Mrs. Walker Archer
Item Date: 1820 -1830
Creation Date: 2012
Location: Bradley Museum

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Description: A crude, handmade wool winder or reel (980.12.1a) with a rectangular base. A vertical pole rises from the centre of the base. It slots through a round hole in the centre of a wooden cross. The cross (980.12.1b) is formed from two slats of wood. Each end of the cross originally had three short rods protruding vertically.

The wool winder was used by the Barron Family of La Chute, Quebec who had a home called the Willow Grange that was built around 1837. The home longer exists.

A wool winder or reel was used to wrap spun yarn around to make skeins. A sophisticated reel could also have a mechanical device called a weasel. From this comes the nursery rhyme "pop goes the weasel" as the reel would make a popping noise when it attained a certain yardage. Reels were used across North America despite attempts by the English to discourage a wool industry. See: http://www.iwto.org/WhyWool/WoolHistory.htm
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