In Oughtibridge down by the river,
I made up my penknives from steel.
I forged them all in my workshop,
And I ground them all on my wheel
With a bang and a tap on my Stiddy,
I pin up the parts of a knife,
The handle is horn, brass or rosewood,
It'll last you the rest of your life.
I?d polish the parts on my linisher,
And punch in my mark on the tang,
I?d carefully put in a nail mark,
And hammer until my ears rang.
Firstly I take up the bolsters,
For they are the first things I made,
I'll put in the springs and the linings
And then I can put in the blade.
And then when I finished a penknife
I'd sell it for a only a 'Bob',
Little Mesters don?t make lots of money,
I never got rich at this job.
My knives were sent all over,
To Portugal, France and to Spain,
America, Greece and Germany
They all knew the Sheffield name.
This is a contemporary song about Yorkshire.
This is a much more cheerful song written from the perspective of a self-employed craftsman who makes penknives and is proud of his work. Several pieces of equipment are named in the song, a linisher - used for grinding and polishing, a stiddy - a very small anvil used to hammer parts of a knife, bolsters - parts which hold the knife together, mark - an initial stamped into the knife blade's blunt part to show who made it, linings - metal parts to separate the various blades to ease the opening and closing of the penknife. The rest of the terms are self explanatory.
This song was produced as part of a schools-based industrial heritage project - for more information see industrial-heritage.epip.org.uk/