Jan 19: Triangle Blacksmiths Roger Barbour’s Shop in Clayton
Mar 9: Triangle Blacksmiths
May 11: Triangle Blacksmiths
Jul 13: Triangle Blacksmiths
Sep 14: Triangle Blacksmiths
Sep 21: Annual Harvest Festival Yates Mill Park in Raleigh, NC
Oct 17-27: NC State Fair at the Heritage Forge & Retail Shop
Nov 9: Triangle Blacksmiths - Tobacco Farm Life Museum in Kenly
The blacksmithing forges were silent at the start of the meeting as we adjourned to the FireFly Hot Glass Studio next door. FireFly partners George Ann Greth and Paul Vernon were gracious hosts and explained the working of a hot glass shop. George Ann proceeded to demonstrate several techniques by making a spiral wrapped cup, a solid color overlaid crackle vase, and an ornament. George Ann was assisted by local NCABANA members Marion Campbell, Colin Eckhart, and Dick Snow. There are at least 5 Triangle Area Blacksmiths who have been playing with hot glass for the 1-2 years since FireFly opened. 18 additional NCABANA members signed up to blow their own ornaments after the demonstrations and I heard a number of people inquiring about lessons and additional workshops.
After the glass blowing demonstration was over, the propane forges were fired up in the ware-house space. Randy Stoltz and Eric Campbell got the hammering started. We had no specific project for the event so it was an open project hammer in. I saw a number of nails, hooks, leaves, decorative S hooks and other items being made over the next 6 hours. The final forge was turned off around 4:30pm. We had a lot of kids at the meeting and I think most of them got to try their hand at hammering. Pallets were placed in front of the anvils to compensate for the height differential of the smaller ones.
Many attendees also visited the other areas of the building that were open during our meeting. Brian Allen, Artisan and Printer, is located in a room in the back corner of the warehouse. He houses several antique printing presses with trays of metal and wooden type along with other tools of the printing trade. The main press on display is an 1850’s Albion Hand Press. He is extremely knowledgeable about the history of printing and loves to talk about printing.
Liberty Arts is in the front of the building and is a local artist’s collective. There are metal, casting, wood, and ceramic artists working from the space. There was a clay class going on during our meeting and at least one lucky young man was gifted with a piece of railroad rail for his first anvil. Thank you Christian Vagn Hansen for not only donating the piece of rail, but cleaning it up and polishing it before handing it over to the young man from Burlington. Jackie MacLeod is one of the artists in Liberty Arts and she worked with Jimmy Alexander in his shop at the old tobacco warehouse. There is a picture of Jim-my posted on the wall at Liberty and some of Jimmy’s equipment is in use by Jackie.
The Dueling Sloths micro-brewery is in another part of the warehouse and they started brewing a batch of beer at 7 am. They had their doors open several times during our meeting and a number of people toured their small brewing cubicle. They are still in the recipe and equipment testing phase of their operation and are not currently selling their product. That does not keep them from passing out samples and I hear at least a few NCABANA members may have been given a taste of the 3 brews on tap.
Special thanks also goes to my wife Teepa Snow for all the cooking and preparation she did before and during the meeting. She had numerous baked goods and tacos, sloppy joes, barbecue chicken, and pulled pork for lunch. George Ann from the glass shop also contributed a macaroni salad.