My Dad’s tool chest. 2017.
Plumb bob and line.
When my Dad died I inherited his tool chest which was filled with wonderful devices and fond memories. The smell of old tobacco tins containing taps and dies, oily rags and wood shavings, metal filings and tallow, brass backed saws and wheel braces, measuring devices and things to make other things… all beautifully preserved, greased and in perfect working order.My Dad, Leonard Walter Harris, was an electrician, boiler engineer and a quite brilliant carpenter. He joined the Royal Navy during WWII as a 17 year old junior ‘Wireman’ in 1943, lying about his age to escape the extreme poverty of Hackney in the east end of London.Dad served aboard various ships during campaigns in North Africa, Italy, Normandy and the Far East. He sailed to America to help bring a landing craft, LST 301 (Landing Ship Tank) across the Atlantic in preparation for the invasion of Europe in June 1944. Throughout his time in the navy he always took his tool chest, embellished with a name plaque, ‘This is the property of Leonard W. Harris RN’, with him on his travels.These photographs are part homage to my dad and part my way of preserving the memory of another era.