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Cole Harbour Heritage Farm Museum

Flail, Threshing

Accession number: 1990.14.02
Date: 1850 – 1900
Materials: Wood, steel, leather
Measurements: 268 cm LThere are two parts 120 cm and 148 cm in lenght
Description: This flail is composed of two sticks attached by leather strap and central ring.  One of the sticks is 120 cm in length and is fashioned from a maple sapling. This is the business end of the flail that hits the grain.  The other stick is the handle and is fashioned from a heavy dowel, 148cm in length.  The two sticks are attached to the leather straps with wire and then connected with a steel ring.
History of Use: This threshing flail would have been used to pound grains, loosening them from their chaff, or outer casing. The user would hold the longer part of the stick, swinging the shorter end. This process often took place on the threshing or winnowing floor of a barn. The grains would be winnowed, or separate from their chaff following threshing.