Monday, July 12, 2010

Echoes From The Oil Country

...It's a series of books, reprints of a column by one "W. Osborne" in a machinist's magazine during the early years of the 20th Century. I picked up Volume 4 at the Indy Hamfest and have been enjoying it in spare moments ever since.

Across such a gulf of time, you'd think both style and substance would be alien, impenetrable. You'd be wrong; Osborne writes in nearly the manner of a blogger, telling instructive stories about the work in a machine shop (and at customer's sites) in the Pennsylvania oil country, addressing himself to the importance of understanding "why" as well as "how" and the amusingly familiar interactions of a large shop filled with skilled workers. Read even a few and you'll have a better notion not just what people thought and did way back when, but how they thought. It's a fascinating glimpse down the corridors of time. Highly recommended!


Carteach said...

{the importance of understanding "why" as well as "how" }

I spend all school year trying to get that point across to students.

og said...

If you like that you should read The J M Pyne stories by Lucian Carey. hardcore stuff for gun nuts.