Disston Saws

Logging Saws


Keystone Saw Works - H. Disston & Sons, Inc. - Phila., PA


Patents Received and/or Used by the Company


Patent 14,863 - 05/13/1856: Improvement in the Construction of Handsaws by Jackson Gorham

Henry Disston used this patent as basis for production of his No. 29, No. 38, No. 39, No. 42, and No. 43 series of saws.

Examples of these saws that I have seen are marked with patent date of May 12, 1856 instead of May 13, 1856 as dated in the document below.  In Disston catalogs (1876, 1909, and 1914), pictures of these saws  are also marked with the patent date of May 12, 1856 and Jackson Gorham name is in an arch above the date.

The Scientific American, August 15, 1857 (see below), describes the saw and indicates to contact H. Williams, assignee, in Atlanta GA for more information.  It also states that Jackson Gorham received this patent on May 12, 1856. 

Hiram Smith specifically mentions this patent as a basis for his Patent 20,313, which he assigned to Henry Disston. In his filing papers, Hiram also used May 12, 1856 date in reference to Jackson Gorham's patent.

Jackson Gorham himself signed a document shown below dated May 13, 1856.

Scientific American, August 15, 1857

"The engraving represents very distinctly a simple yet obviously important improvement in hand-saws, which enables one tool to perform the functions of a saw and square with tolerable exactness.

The blade of the saw is perfectly straight on the back, and the front edge of handle A is made perfectly straight, faced with metal to prevent be coming bruised or incorrect with use, and is finished up after being fixed to the saw, so as to be exactly at right angles to the back of the blade.

The blade is graduated, as represented, so that it may be used to measure, and scratch awl B is fitted in a suitable socket in the handle so as to be always at hand.

It is, of course, necessary to make the fastening of the handle to the blade very secure against even the slightest play.

The edge of the handle being applied to the edge of any work to be marked, the back of the blade serves in exactly the same manner as the edge of the ordinary try square.

Its great convenience should ensure it a rapid introduction. This invention, one of the simplest ever produced, was secured by Letters Patent, May 12, 1856.

For further particulars, address H. Williams, assignee, Atlanta, Georgia. Jackson Gorham is the inventor."



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