Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Did You Pick Out the Correct Answer for this Mystery Artifact?

I’m here again to let you know some information about an artifact from our collection. It’s last week’s mystery artifact and it looks like this:

We had some pretty good guesses: an egg mixer, a rug beater, a lightbulb changer…but this artifact is in fact a sort of seasonally appropriate artifact, as fall is about to start. It's an apple picker, or an "apple-picker basket." 

Maybe you’ve seen something like this before. If you’ve been to an apple orchard where they let you pick your own apples, they might offer you a tool that looks like this:

This one has a little piece of foam at the bottom for a safe place for your fruit to land.
With both the one seen above and our mystery artifact, you use it to pull apples or other tree-fruits from high branches. How do you do this? It’s pretty simple: you place the picker around the apple you’d like to pick and gently pull away from the tree. If the fruit is ripe enough, it should drop right into the basket of the fruit picker, and you can put it in your bag for safekeeping. 

There are other types of apple pickers, including this one, that allows you to clamp onto the fruit and twist it to get it to release from the branch. 

Also, there are varieties with a cloth bag instead of a wire basket, which allows for less bruising of the fruit when it drops. 

Most of these types of tools have very long handles so that someone can pick high up fruit from standing on the ground. What's strange is our example, the Mystery Artifact is actually not that long. We're not quite sure what that is. It's possible someone who owned this one added a shorter stick. Even though this wouldn't help them get fruit from the highest branches, it would definitely help with things that are out of reach, and perhaps even would help quite a bit when using a ladder.

Have you ever used one of these before? Does this make you wanna go out to your local orchard and pick apples? Let us know what you think about this mystery artifact, and stay tuned for a new one soon. Of course, you can always come in to the museum to check out this artifact, a number of our past mysteries, and so much more. We're open daily 1-5 pm. Thanks for reading!

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