Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Harvest Days, Part I

I've already marked my calendar for next October's Harvest Days at the Landis Valley Museum.

This was the first year we attended and it was worth every penny (and not just because Turkey Hill was handing out free ice cream).

During the two-day event, various 19th-century reenactors showed what life was like in a small country village.

It didn't take long for me to spot a woodworker—Jack Stone, the cooper.

Jack learned to make buckets and piggins using traditional methods from the John C. Campbell Folk School. Since then, he's been making coopered items to sell as a part-time business.

His butter carriers, which are lidded buckets (photos 2 and 3), have an interesting locking mechanism where one end of the handle is slid into a mortise, and the other end is locked in place with a pin.

Jack makes hoops from white oak or metal with brass rivets, and staves from sassafras. The wooden hoops take quite a while longer to make, but they add a certain homespun detail.

Check out the other photos to see Jack's unique ways to rout the groove for bottoms and shave the staves to final width. And check out his website to see a short video about his wooden hoops.