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Blacksmiths wanted at historic homestead

Published: Tuesday, May 6, 2014 10:12 a.m. CDT

DeKALB - “Blacksmiths Wanted” is not a common ad seen today, but that is just who the Joseph F. Glidden Homestead & Historical Center in DeKalb is looking for. 

The blacksmith club at the national historic site where Joseph Glidden invented his popular style of barbed wire “The Winner” in 1873 provides living history demonstrations from May through November at the Homestead, 921 W. Lincoln Highway, DeKalb. 

Both experienced blacksmiths and those interested in learning the trade are welcome to become involved in this educational and rewarding opportunity. The blacksmith shop was once as common as the gas station is today. The blacksmith shoed horses, fixed wagons, and made anything out of iron that a household required. Today, few people recognize an anvil or know what it is used for. The Glidden Homestead is recreating that history and teaching the importance of the old-time trade to new generations in the Phineas Vaughan Blacksmith Shop at the site.

The Glidden Homestead blacksmith club meets twice a month to hone skills and learn new techniques from experienced members. Club members provide demonstrations to the public during the Homestead’s regular tour season, make hand-crafted merchandise for the gift shop, and craft tools and other items to be used at the Homestead. 

Anyone who would like to learn more is invited to attend a club meeting. For details, contact info@gliddenhomestead.org or call 815-756-7904.

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