Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. One who works white metal.
  • n. One who does finish work, such as polishing, on iron.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A person who forges things out of tin or pewter. A tinsmith.
  • n. A worker in iron who finishes or polishes the work, in distinction from one who forges it.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who works in tinned or galvanized iron, or white iron; a tinsmith.
  • n. A worker in iron who finishes or polishes the work, in distinction from one who forges it.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A worker in tinware.
  • n. A worker in iron who finishes or polishes the work, in distinction from one who forges it.

Etymologies

white + (black)smith.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
white + smith (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • He said at Atlanta: "The true diversity of employment which makes self-sustaining communities consists of occupations that do not appeal to the imagination like the great cotton factory; but the artisans ... who work in iron or wood, the stove-maker and the like, the furniture-maker and the tinman, the house-wright, the wagon-builder, the blacksmith, and the whitesmith are the most valuable citizens.

    The Rise of Cotton Mills in the South

  • Born in Birmingham, the son of a whitesmith and worker in small iron wares.

    Archive 2008-08-01

  • Haral Luhhan, the Emond's Field blacksmith, had gone into partnership with a Domani cutler and a whitesmith from Almoth Plain, and Master Aydaer had hired three men and two women who knew furniture making and carving, and gilding as well, though there certainly was no gold lying about for that.

    Lord of Chaos

  • A whitesmith in his apron and some of his saws under his arm came in, sat down, and called for his glass of punch and the paper, both which he used with as much ease as a lord.

    Inns and Taverns of Old London

  • He was great friends with Tina, the daughter of the whitesmith, who lived nearly opposite.

    The Book of Dragons

  • Yet, inefficient though the whitesmith was, Watt could ill spare him, and we find him writing to Dr. Roebuck almost in despair, saying, "My old white-iron man is dead!" feeling his loss to be almost irreparable.

    Industrial Biography

  • His first cylinder was made by a whitesmith, of hammered iron soldered together, but having used quicksilver to keep the cylinder air-tight, it dropped through the inequalities into the interior, and "played the devil with the solder."

    Industrial Biography

  • ` Pip, dear old chap, life is made of ever so many partings welded together, as I may say, and one man's a blacksmith, and one's a whitesmith, and one's a goldsmith, and one's a coppersmith.

    Great Expectations

  • As a blacksmith said once to me, when he was asked why he was not both blacksmith and whitesmith, 'The smith that will meddle with all things may go shoe the goslings;' an old proverb, which, from its mixture of drollery and good sense, became ever after a favourite of mine.

    Tales and Novels — Volume 02

  • Richard Davis, aged 33, a whitesmith by trade, had drank hard by intervals; was much troubled with sweating of his hands, which incommoded him in his occupation, but which ceased on his frequently dipping them in lime.

    Zoonomia, Vol. I Or, the Laws of Organic Life

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Comments

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  • Cool! I didn't think of looking this up on Wikipedia. And I didn't know whitesmiths worked on cold metal. *thinks about new career*

    April 9, 2008

  • From Wiki:

    A whitesmith is a person who works with "white" or light-colored metals such as tin and pewter. While blacksmiths work mostly with hot metal, whitesmiths do the majority of their work on cold metal (although they might use a forge to shape their raw materials).

    The term is also applied to metalworkers who do only finishing work - such as filing or polishing - on iron and other "black" metals.

    April 9, 2008