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Audio Recording Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now."

[Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now."]

About this Item


  • Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now."


  • Dowling, Jim (Narrator)
  • McCarl, Robert (Interviewer)

Created / Published

  • 1994-08-08


  • -  Interviews
  • -  Oral history
  • -  Sound recordings
  • -  Irish Americans
  • -  Watson Machine International
  • -  Machinery industry
  • -  Ethnography
  • -  United States -- New Jersey -- Paterson


  • Ethnography
  • Interviews


  • -  Interview with Jimmy Dowling at Watson Machine International.
  • -  Summary of audio segment: Characters he knew at Watson. "There were people here who actually designed machines when I first came here. They were elderly people. Oh what's that name? . . . There is a little machine over here [points to his machining work area on the shop floor] that cuts traverse screws, and he designed that machine. They have a patent on making traverse screws. There is other people make them but not with the same patents. [McCarl -- What are they?] Traverse screws, they guide the wire and they go back and forth and guide it on to spools. There is a sequence of them over there on the rack at the end of my lathe. I'm the only one here that makes them now." [What about other old-timers?] There were a number of people here in their sixties when Jimmy first arrived at Watson. Most retired years ago and some died from here. Heart attack, cancer, a whole lot of them died from this place. One who used to teach Jimmy machining techniques. He worked here for thirty and thirty-five years prior to Jimmy coming here. His teacher was Gordon Van Veet and his uncle designed the traverse screws. And he taught Jimmy the technique of making the traverse screws.


  • Analog Audio Cassette

Call Number/Physical Location

  • AFC 1995/028: WIP-RM-A003

Source Collection

  • Working in Paterson Project Collection (AFC 1995/028)


  • American Folklife Center

Digital Id

Online Format

  • audio

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Credit line

Working in Paterson Project collection, 1993-2002 (AFC 1995/028), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Dowling, Jim, and Robert McCarl. Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now.". -08-08, 1994. Audio.

APA citation style:

Dowling, J. & McCarl, R. (1994) Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now.". -08-08. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Dowling, Jim, and Robert McCarl. Traverse screws: "I'm the only one here that makes them now.". -08-08, 1994. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.