Sheep branding iron. Brand letters "JR" reversed. Used at Newmarket Saleyards. Possibly used for JR Ralph Meat Company.

Branding Irons or Sticks are tools with the purpose of leaving a mark usually to indicate ownership or to track stock movement. In order for the hide or fleece of stock to be kept in optimal condition, branding irons at the Newmarket Saleyards were only used with removable materials to identify stock. Prior to World War II, tar was used for branding, and then paint was used. For sheep branding, a mixture of sump oil and red ochre was sometimes used so as not to compromise the fleece for shearing. Animals were branded on the shoulder, loin, tail and loin, or at the hip points. Brands were usually applied after stock had been sold to indicate owner or Stock Agent.

Physical Description

Sheep branding iron. Letters "JR" have been welded onto a cross member (probably with a third letter after R missing - broken off), in turn welded onto a tubular metal handle, bent at right angles near the head.

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