The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #34802   Message #2156596
Posted By: EuGene
24-Sep-07 - 06:20 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Schnitzelbank
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Schnitzelbank
Pseudo German from MN:

I had to dig around all my junque, Fibber McGee closet stuff, etc., but finally I located my old "Schnitzelbank" chart, and by golly, you hit all 17 things on the chart, and in the right order.

I don't speak German, but my Father's family was German, and when I was a child and went to family gatherings, my Great Uncle would bring out his embroidered Schnitzelbank chart and pointer stick, then lead all us kids through the song.

Meanwhile, all the elderly generation from the old country would all sit around (men in one room, women in another) chatting away in German. The last of them, my Great uncle died in the 1960's, and with his demise, great Grand-dad's schnitzelbank (yes, the latter was a cobbler in Germany and brought his bench with him to the USA) disappeared. It was a nifty saw-horse style work bench where you sat astraddle a narrow part at one end and worked on the wider workbench area in front of you.

It had an neat clamp that you operated with a foot pedal (like a drummer uses to whack the bass drum) connected to a rod that came up through a hole in the workbench, arched over and pointed down toward the workbench. Then all you had to do is place an item under the end of the clamp rod, step on the pedal to bring the rod down against the item, and the item would not move while you worked on it. You could turn the item around, flip it over, change items, etc. instantly just by lifting your foot then reclamping. A very quick & simple little vise indeed!