Blackwood man could have world's biggest nail collection
8:01am Tuesday 24th September 2013 in News
Richard Jones, of Blackwood, has been collecting nails from around the world for 53 years. The 78-year-old retired carpenter has thousands of nails in what is believed to be the biggest collection in the world.
A BLACKWOOD man who has spent more than 50 years collecting historic nails is believed to have the largest collection in the world.
Richard Jones, 78, has thousands of nails in all shapes and sized from around the world that date back as far as Roman times.
The retired carpenter, who has featured in trade magazines and regularly exhibits some 32 boards of nails, began collecting them from timbers and floor jousts when he helped in father who worked for a construction company..
Some of the nails were made at the former Newport nail manufacturer, JJ Cordes (Dos) Works, which opened in 1835 and exported nails to countries all over the world, including Australia, Japan and Canada.
He said: “I worked in a joinery shop for 38 years and came across a variety of nails. Word spread that I began collecting and many of my colleagues would bring me old or unusual nails, thereby enabling my collection to grow.
“ I later went to work for a construction company in Crosskeys, which involved the renovation of old farm buildings and public houses and once again, I began to find even more nails.
Mr Jones also bought nails at antique fairs and boot sales.
“My hobby snow-balled and has grown into one of the biggest collections in the world, if not the biggest.”
He has spent many hours making frames and easels to mount his collection as well as cleaning, researching and cataloguing each item and attends local fairs and shows.
“There is a lot of interest in my display and I now have people donating nails to me from around the world.”
Mr Jones would like to see his collection eventually housed in St Fagans: National History Museum.
He is appealing to anyone with information or old photographs of JJ Cordes to get in touch on 01495 228366.