The term “mantiques,” popularized by the TV show American Pickers, has become synonymous with guy stuff, the stuff industrial is made of and the stuff that smacks of brawn, dirt and sweat. Just take one look at Frank and Mike crawling through piles of “rusty gold” intent upon unearthing American history and you get the point.
A keen interest in all that’s salvageable has allowed me to reinvent “junk” into works of art. For example, a spool end used for wire at GE in Schenectady becomes a fabulous wall hanging. A lot of primitive soldering irons becomes unwitting industrial flowers in an old silver plated champagne bucket. No longer for practical use, items such as these are mementos of history and can remind one that labor, whether by the hands of males or females (go Rosie the Riveter!) is what helped to make this country great. Made in the USA is still truly the best.