The legend of Abraham Lincoln’s axe


“I distinctly recollect an occasion when I was in the blacksmith shop of one Joshua Miller of the village of New Salem aforesaid, when Mr. Lincoln came into said blacksmith shop, and after some conversation asked Mr. Miller to cut his (Lincoln’s) initials in an iron wedge which he, Lincoln, then held in his hand, to which Mr. Miller replied he could not do it, as he was no scholar. Thereupon Mr. Lincoln said to said Miller: ‘Let me have your hammer and cold chisel and I will cut them my-self.’ – Mr. John Q. Spears

According to legend, Abraham Lincoln lost the head of his axe while helping to construct a home for his neighbor Mentor Graham, Lincoln’s surveying  instructor. In 1885, an iron wedge with the initials “A.L.” was found while repairs were being made on a brick house near Menard County, Illinois.

The “A.L.” iron wedge is now housed at the National Museum of American History – but we know that life requires you to swing hard, and not lose your head. Therefore, 1791 has made a special edition axe to commemorate this special American. Our 1791 Supply & Co. Axe is made in partnership with Council Tool in Lake Waccamaw, North Carolina, a family owned business that has been producing top quality hand tools since 1886.

The axe head is forged from Made in U.S.A. alloy steel, selected for superior edge holding and strength, and sharpened by hand – and an experienced one at that – with fine grit abrasives and leather. Axes are drop forged for strength and toughness by hard working individuals who pour their experience, sweat and pride into their work, resulting in one of the best axes on the market today.

The hickory handle is produced with modern manufacturing methods but in a style and shape that evokes a time when axes were the livelihood of many hard-working folks.

They two pieces are securely joined to the head by a softwood wedge, crossed by steel wedges, working to maintain the integrity of the bond.

Available now, exclusively at


  • Revan

    To bad you did not try to make it look like an Ax he would of used. I would of paid money for that.

  • billsnotes365

    This token was made during Lincoln’s 1860 presidential campaign. Some people think that guy holding the wedge for Lincoln is Stephen A. Douglas, his arch rivil in Illinois through out the 1850s.

    • BlueMN

      Was Abe Lincoln the first Progressive? The only president to believe so strongly in the supremacy of the Federal Government over the states that he went to war over it. That’s how we became “The United States” instead of “These united states.”

      If Abe were alive today, (born to a poor family, and later became an Illinois lawyer) Beck and his Tea Party minions would call him a “Socialist.”

      “Labor is prior to and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit
      of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed.
      Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher
      consideration” -State of the Union Address: Abraham Lincoln December 3, 1861

      Turns out Karl Marx was a great admirer of President Lincoln, and the Founding Fathers, and sent him a letter after his re-election:
      “The workingmen of Europe feel sure that, as the American War of
      Independence initiated a new era of ascendancy for the middle class, so
      the American Antislavery War will do for the working classes.”

      • billsnotes365

        Yes, I’ve also read Thomas DiLorenzo’s book about how bad a guy
        Lincoln was. To me that book had a lot holes. To him re-uniting the country was of no importance at all. It didn’t matter to him if African-Americans remained as slaves for who knows how long. He was even against establishing a national system of paper currency. In his opinion having each bank issue its own paper currency with no regulations. As a student of 19th century economic history, I can tell you that system was chaos.

        Consider this. How would history have changed if The United States had divided up into two or three countries. Would the Nazis and Japan have won World War II? What would have happened if the Confederate States of America, free from Northern influence and invaded Cuba, Mexico and Latin American to establish more slave states? There were a bunch of southern politicians who were ready to that before the Civil War.

        Were all of Lincoln’s programs bad? His plans for roads and canals
        was precursor to Dwight Eisenhower’s Interstate highway system. I know I’m rambling, but no everything government does is bad if helps the private sector flourish. Guys like Thomas DiLorenzo are like Obama. They are so stuck in their ideology that they can’t think out of the box.

  • Anonymous

    Line up folks and get your replica axe here before it’s made in China.

  • Jonathan Leibowitz

    Competition’s benefits are destroyed when groups, such as unions, are organized to interfere with competition by forcing membership.

  • Anonymous

    Is this axe really$200??? Sorry Glenn, I am not another one of you suckers!

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