Our latest find is a “meat mixing bowl” said its former owners. It is a huge hollowed out tree, 5 feet long, 2 feet wide and a foot deep. It is very very old and handmade. The gouge and chisel marks are evidence of the skill of the craftsman who made this huge “bowl”. Because of the age and lifetime of rubbing, cleaning and refinishing it is hard to tell what kind of wood it is, probably pine or poplar. Has a couple of cracks in the bottom (so some of your meat juice might leak out) but it is still very sound. The ancient patina is beautiful. It appears to have several coats of shellac.
In its day, probably in the 19th century, this huge wooden tub was used at the annual hogkillin’ to mix the meat that was turned into sausage, with just the right amount of lean and fat. Since that was usually only a yearly event, I would imagine it found other uses during the year since it could hold a lot of almost anything. I think that today’s use would be as a one of a kind primitive country display piece. Although it is very large, it is surprisingly light weight because of the thin sides and bottom purposely designed by the maker. I makes a fine table decoration for a very large table. We will have it for sale in our booth at Antique Center in Murfreesboro very soon-come take a look.