Tidgewell & Co

Tidgewell & Son

Tool Makers of
Middletown, Connecticut


Tools Made: Try & sliding T-bevels squares, marking and morticing gauges, web saw frames, printers sticks and printing materials.

Working Dates: 1847-75?.

      See Middletown Tool Co. for a map view of the factory. Also, in the West Long Hill District. Map B & V.

     The company was probably James and William Tidgewell and the son, James, JR. James and James, JR. are both listed in the 1860 census as a manufacturers. In the 1870 census James is listed as a tool maker and James, JR. as a manufacturer of squares and bevels. William is listed as a machinist. All three were born in England, James in 1798, James, JR. in 1821 and William in 1826. Ref. 14 states the Tidgewell brothers made square and bevels. Also, Ref. 40 shows a location for J. & W. Tidgewell Tool Manufacturer near the Middletown-Middlefield town line on Wadsworth Street, Rte. 175. The City Directory for 1875-76 has Tidgewell square factory opposite the Middletown Tool Co. See map below. The 1874 Beers Atlas of Middlesex County lists James as a maker of squares and bevels in the West Long Hill area.

James Senior died 14 March 1871, age 73.

     Middlefield was part of Middletown until 1866. Ref. 14 listed a James Tidgeman & Son making try & sliding T-bevels, miter squares at the Starr factory. I think this is a misprint and it is Tidgewell. Also, a J. Tidgwel is listed as an employee of Starr in 1842. (Could be the same person, possibly a spelling error). The Starr factory is in the Staddle Hill area. Ref. 7 and 40 show a J. Tidgewell home in that area. William Tidgewell of Middletown was issued a patent for a joiners plane, 313,694 Mar. 10, 1885.

     I have not seen or heard of any tools marked Tidgewell & Son.

Tidgewell1.jpg (50771 bytes)                  Tidgewell2.jpg (8561 bytes)


     Below is a 9 3/8 X 20 square. This information and photo was provided by F. Michael McGrath, New Glasgow, NS, Canada. Note the pin on the bottom of the handle. Most large squares have a pin or tab close to the middle.


Tidgewell5.jpg (23906 bytes)




Tidgewell6.jpg (26145 bytes)    Tidgewell7.jpg (22049 bytes)

Sliding T-Bevel 6 1/16 inch handle and a 10 inch long blade.

Photos by Rose Paul and George Springston

     A sample of their bevel and try squares. All of the bevel squares I have seen have blades cut to a 22.5 degree angle.

Tidgewell8.jpg (142024 bytes)


Miter  Square


Tidgewell3.JPG (44047 bytes)

Mark on a marking gauge


Photo below is a Tidgewell morticing gauge courtesy of M-WTCA Jim Fox.

Tidgewell4.JPG (1506273 bytes)


Below is a Web Saw Frame. The mark is the same as the square, however, it is stamped "16" above the logo. This the width from the outside edges of the saw frame.




Midtool6.jpg (131328 bytes)       

1860 AD.


     Patents issued or assigned to this company or one of its owners. See ref.24 for more Middletown patents.

Name						Pat. No		Item		Issue Date
Tidgewell,James					17457		Composing stick	6/2/1857
Tidgewell,William				312229		Plane		2/10/1885
Assigned to Meriden Malleable Iron Co.
Tidgewell,W.					313694		Joiner's plane	3/10/1885
Assigned to Meriden Malleable Iron 

References:  3, 7, 11, 14, 20, 24, 40, 59, 66.   Back Home

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