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Comstock Folder Clasp Marking
Comstock Folder Open Back
Comstock Folder Closed Front
Comstock Folder Partially Open
Comstock Folder Closed Back
  Comstock Folder Thimble Shaft Closeup.JPG - COMSTOCK FOLDER – Rare original Comstock folding candlestick, brass handle and clasp with reciprocating slotted steel thimble and spike, brass clasp gang stamped PATENT APPLIED FOR in oval marking, clasp attached with brass rivet, folder open 6 3/4 in. long and closed 5 3/4 in. long, No. 220 in Wilson and Bobrink’s “A Collector’s Guide to Antique Miners’ Candlesticks” [Although the Neils Larsen candlestick, patent date May 26, 1874, is the earliest documented folding candlestick, the earliest manufactured folding candlestick is likely the original Comstock folder shown here.  While the clasp is clearly marked as patent applied for, there is no known patent recorded for the Comstock folder.  Photographs from the Comstock mines as early as the mid-1860s show miners holding candlesticks with a handle, thimble and spike, but no hook (see the Comstock split thimble candlestick elsewhere in my candlestick pics).  The Comstock folder embodies these same hook-less features.  The association of the folding candlestick with the Comstock mines is somewhat circumstantial in that most of the few known original examples were all found in and around that area of Virginia City, NV.  The Comstock folder is a simple and attractive folding design.  Unfortunately, this simplicity also makes the Comstock folder the most likely candlestick candidate for fakes and reproductions and many are known.  The fakes range from easy to spot to very well done.  The question is what to look for so you don’t fall victim to an expensive disappointing lesson.  The handle and clasp on all original folders are solid brass with a brass headed rivet holding the clasp.  The quality of the workmanship on the original folders is such that the handles are well proportioned and symmetric, not varying in thickness nor lopsided.  The original clasps are well made and are gang stamped as noted earlier.  Probably the most difficult feature to fake concerns the attachment of the spike shaft and the slotted thimble.  The shaft and thimble on all original folders are two separate pieces of steel that are blacksmith forge-welded together.  They are not all one piece as many fakes show nor does the shaft penetrate through the thimble.  It’s also noteworthy that of the original folders that I’ve seen, they all look to have been used and none have a sharp tip on the spike.]  
Comstock Folder Clasp Closeup
Comstock Folder Inner Thimble
Comstock Folder Thimble and Handle
Comstock Candle Spike
Comstock Split Thimble RSide

Comstock Folder Thimble Shaft Closeup | COMSTOCK FOLDER – Rare original Comstock folding candlestick, brass handle and clasp with reciprocating slotted steel thimble and spike, brass clasp gang stamped PATENT APPLIED FOR in oval marking, clasp attached with brass rivet, folder open 6 3/4 in. long and closed 5 3/4 in. long, No. 220 in Wilson and Bobrink’s “A Collector’s Guide to Antique Miners’ Candlesticks” [Although the Neils Larsen candlestick, patent date May 26, 1874, is the earliest documented folding candlestick, the earliest manufactured folding candlestick is likely the original Comstock folder shown here. While the clasp is clearly marked as patent applied for, there is no known patent recorded for the Comstock folder. Photographs from the Comstock mines as early as the mid-1860s show miners holding candlesticks with a handle, thimble and spike, but no hook (see the Comstock split thimble candlestick elsewhere in my candlestick pics). The Comstock folder embodies these same hook-less features. The association of the folding candlestick with the Comstock mines is somewhat circumstantial in that most of the few known original examples were all found in and around that area of Virginia City, NV. The Comstock folder is a simple and attractive folding design. Unfortunately, this simplicity also makes the Comstock folder the most likely candlestick candidate for fakes and reproductions and many are known. The fakes range from easy to spot to very well done. The question is what to look for so you don’t fall victim to an expensive disappointing lesson. The handle and clasp on all original folders are solid brass with a brass headed rivet holding the clasp. The quality of the workmanship on the original folders is such that the handles are well proportioned and symmetric, not varying in thickness nor lopsided. The original clasps are well made and are gang stamped as noted earlier. Probably the most difficult feature to fake concerns the attachment of the spike shaft and the slotted thimble. The shaft and thimble on all original folders are two separate pieces of steel that are blacksmith forge-welded together. They are not all one piece as many fakes show nor does the shaft penetrate through the thimble. It’s also noteworthy that of the original folders that I’ve seen, they all look to have been used and none have a sharp tip on the spike.] Download Original Image
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