I picked this up at auction. I don't know if it is a kid's toy or a tool cart. Very sturdy, apparently home made. Anyone have any idea what it actually is, when it may have been made, and what it might be worth?
The image that it brings to mind, is one of a young child of the Great Depression (or any of the lean times), being sent out to gather the small lumps of coal that fell off the wagons or coal trucks.
It would be very useful for tools, gardening, any number of tasks. The bottom might be for coal or cord wood for a stove, with the top bin used for transporting the ashes--one trip for the task.
It does look hand-crafted--I did a quick search on 'coal cart' and 'ash cart', and couldn't find a match. Maybe the rubber wheels will help date it. A very good example of 'make do,' IMO.
The picture leaves a few details lacking. What appears to be a handle, does it actually have a handle on it to pull by hand? The upper part of this, the cupped out section over the small wheels, is there a hole of any type in it to the lower section? Describe it as best you can, please.
I think its home made and can only guess for what it may have been used. I get the impression it was not intended as a toy.
Its just the right height for cleaning out ashes and coals from wood burning stoves. The upper bin is right height for a kitchen stove; The lower bin is correct height for a ilving room heating stove. However, in both cases great care had to be taken not to dribble live coals on the floor. After loading, it would have been rolled outside and turned over to dump.
The other possibility is an accessory for a blacksmith's forge. It could have been used to carry away ash and cinders. It could have been used as a quencing trough at a forge although all of those that I have seen are larger and stationary.
As a forge accessory, ti could have been used to hold and transport hot parts.
Again in the black smith shop: It could have been used to hold cooling water for heavy grinding jobs such as sharpening large rotory mower blades. During heavy grinding, the part needs to be dipped in water to keep it cool so as not to alter its temper.
Its a cement hod for a stone mason/brick layer. The upper and lower bins held different grades of cement. The lower layer could have held coarse filler cement and the upper, fine finishing cement.
Welder's cart ... one part holds the welding gas tanks, the other holds the tools and the torches?