Erasmus Kutz was born in England in 1778 and emigrated to the U.S. About 1812. He could have been related to a London rule maker, Andrew Kutz who worked at least in 1817-17. Erasmus Kutz is listed as a rule maker, and later as a mathematical instrument maker in New York City, working at several addresses on Water Street from 1818 to 1839. After this, until 1850 he maintained a water street business address while living in Newark, NJ. A son, Erasmus Kutz Jr briefly made rules about 1839 and then is listed in NYC directories as working for the Police and as a clerk. This early double bladde ship bevel is marked, “Kutz Maker N. York” and appears to be quite old. It is made of boxwood with brass trim, and is 12 inches long graduated in 1/8s. One side is clearly graduated, while the other (with the Kutz name, is very lightly stamped. There is a horizontal bow in the rule. There are spots of staining in the boxwood, and one small old chip in an edge. The brass blades with square ends are 6 3/4” and 2 7/8” long respectively. This is a very early American ship rule—I've not seen one older. Good.