This malleable iron Samson vice was on my dad’s workbench throughout my younger days. I am guessing it is around 75 years old and while it might simply be a tool in function, it has served as so much more.
Being careless, I probably first started pinching the web of my hand between my thumb and finger when I was about four. The handle slid much too easily into the spindle for my experience level.
Later, with our walnut husk-stained hands, my siblings and I would crack the tough shells of black walnuts in it.
When I was a bit older, I remember using it to file down pennies to the size of dimes so that I could thwart a Coke machine -- even though I spent much more than 9 cents effort in doing so each time.
In my teens and twenties, I spent many hours banging away on metal fastened in its jaws -- for lawn mower, tractor, and car repairs.
It is now mounted on the workbench at the cabin and the sounds of the handle sliding in the spindle remind me of my dad and his legacy.
We felt so tough with certain mechanical advantages.