Early 20th century bronze rope grab manufactured by Merriman Brothers, Boston Mass. "Will grip a rope at any point, Will not slip on any size rope within it's capacity. May be furnished in connection with blocks, or any block may be hooked into the eye." Size #2. Rope capacity 3/8 to 3/4 diameter. Measures 9 1/2 inches in length. Weighs 3.25 pounds.
Reprinted from The Wooden Boat Magazine "Merriman Brothers 1928, Makers of Blocks, Deck, and Spar Fittings for Every Sailboat Need." https://www.woodenboat.com/library/merriman-brothers-1928 Page 23, Fig.212A.
The MERRIMAN Bros. Inc. was founded in 1898, and published catalogs of yacht hardware up until the 1960s; it offered for sale most of the well-known bronze fittings that you have seen on the decks and in the rigging of the finest sailboats. The trident stamp set into the bronze winches, turnbuckles, wood shell blocks and other hardware parts, mark them as Merriman fittings.
The Merriman brothers, Edward B. and Franklin, were metallurgists with a keen interest in boats and sailing. In 1907 when the racing cutter 'AVENGER' was launched at the Herreshoff yard in Bristol, RI, she carried 37 new blocks designed by Nat Herreshoff and built by the Merriman brothers. Their yacht hardware business grew to include custom blocks made in their Jamaica Plain factory for RESOLUTE, and for countless other yachts large and small. Their main business was not blocks and winches, however; it was Merriman megaphones, including the familiar
cheerleader megaphones. They had a patent for the Stentor Megaphone dated April 4, 1899, naming the rivets, metal mouthpiece, and adjacent parts in the patent. The Navy specified Merriman megaphones because of their scientifically proven horn angle of 22 degrees. The Penobscot Marine Museum has a Stentor Megaphone from 1900 in their collection.
The Herreshoff cutter, AVENGER, by the way, was “one of our greatest prize winners,” according to L. Francis Herreshoff in his book Introduction to Yachting, page 170-71. With many innovations for her time, such as hollow spars, and an overlapping jib, she won three successive Astor Cups in 1907, ’08, ’09, and again in 1911 when owned by Alexander S. Cochran. AVENGER was 74′9″ LOA, 53′ LWL, and 14′6″ beam with a draft of 9′6″.
Merriman Bros. Inc. factory was located in Jamaica Plain, near Boston, Massachusetts, and subsequently moved to Hingham, Massachusetts. In 1963 Merriman Bros. Inc. became a subsidiary of UTD Corporation in Hingham. It ceased operations in 1967.