Holey Board, Batman!


My mother had this tea cart with one of her silver tea services on top, and below she had a collection of vintage kitchen tools along with a cutting board.
There is a potato masher, two graters, a handheld mixer, and a measuring cup.
And an interesting cutting board. I’m not sure if the cutting board is actually as old as the tools–it looks fairly new, actually, but the interesting thing about it are the holes. I’ve never seen a cutting board like that before. My sister showed me these pictures and was curious about it, so I’m asking you!

Are they holes for draining juices when slicing things like, say, tomatoes or fruit?

Are they holes for (more) pegs to hang things up? Is it just a decorative board?

Are they doorways for evil spirits to escape the kitchen?

Tell me your ideas, real…..or imaginary!


  1. brookdale says:

    Could it be a cribbage board? Are there enough holes?
    Love the old egg beater, my mother had one just like that.

  2. wkyangel says:

    I may be some sort of loom? A type of Inkle? I’m curious!!!

  3. buglady77 says:

    Well my first thought was completely inappropriate! All I could think was “well if you’re going to wallop someone with a wooden spoon, get the one with the hole in it so there’s less wind resistance” I have no idea what it’s really for, I hope someone else does though!

    And I need to find myself one of those graters, they’re perfect for just storing a nutmeg nut inside and I wish I had one! Love all the old stuff.

  4. BobsWifey says:

    Maybe for drying noodles?

  5. pulsk1 says:

    It is a pegged cutting board. The pegs are to hold the item like a sandwich still so you can get a good cut. Works like a third hand.

  6. RosieJo says:

    I would guess the pegs are to help keep the piece of meat (or whatever) in place as you are slicing it. Just a guess, could be a game board of some kind, too.

  7. Kate says:

    It is not a cutting board, it is a casserole board.
    Hot dishes are held in place with the pegs and keep them
    secure when traveling or carrying.

    These were a big deal for church suppers a while back.
    They often had the ladies name carved or burned into the bottom.

  8. glasslass says:

    I thought I was the only one with two nutmeg graters like those. Have used everything on the board except for the board. I really like the casserole idea.

  9. Joell says:

    I have been around antiques for nearly 60 years and have never seen a board like that, it looks more like some sort of game, with the heart motif and the color of the wood, I would guess it is real old.
    I started collecting kitchen items when I was very young, I still use a potato masher and nutmeg graters like the one in your photos, and they still works just like the day they were first made.
    I love old things—I tell my darling Hubby that everyday, he is my most precious antique.

  10. Joell says:

    The more I look at the board, it looks like it has a pattern to it, like the pegs could be set in holes and maybe yarn wound around the pegs then tied off to create pot holders, coasters or some sort of doilie type little mats.

  11. holstein woman says:

    Wow, all those oldies but goodies look just like home except the nutmeg grater. We kids in Virginia would not have known what nutmeg was. Grandma only used the very common spices. I think the board is very beautiful.. Looks like a tux with the heart for the neck hole and the points on the bottom. I like the idea of the casserole board however. It is a really nice piece.

  12. Jersey Lady says:

    A regulation cribbage board has 120 holes

  13. Jersey Lady says:

    Maybe post it on Dusty Old Thing on Facebook. Somebody will recognize what it is. https://www.facebook.com/DustyOldThing

  14. gibbsjc says:

    I’ve seen these before. They are used (as one of the other posts said) for holding hot casseroles. They can also be used as serving trays. Insert the pegs to hold glasses, dishes, etc. so they don’t slide around while you are carrying them. I’ve seen them at pot lucks and family reunions.

  15. Leck Kill Farm says:

    I don’t think it is “an antique” as the color of the wood is too light. If it was 75-100 yo, the wood would have darkened/yellowed and you would see patina from use in the areas were it was handled. Also, I can see that some of the holes still have splintering at the drill holes, as if pegs were never inserted and removed, which would have smoothed the rough areas.

    Like someone else mentioned, nutmeg was not an ingredient I ever remember anyone using yet those graters can be found by the dozens at every farm auction, yard sale and flea market where I live. Were they used to grate cinnamon?

  16. Jersey Lady says:

    Suzanne-could you maybe put a casserole dish on that board and the pegs aound it to see if that might be it? I agree it is not old. What stymies me are those fishtail points at the bottom

  17. Leah says:

    I thought way out of kitchen for evil spirits sounded good tho. :dancingmonster:

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