Friday, October 3, 2014

Forge Faciliation

Devin has been passionate about Blacksmithing for over a year now. It was last year at this time that 60 Minutes, Australia flew over to film our family for the day. Devin's passion was a big focus of the filming. Facilitating our children's passions are so important as Unschooling parents. In one year's time, Devin has built his own forge and is now bladesmithing knives that he sells in his Etsy Shop.

During our time in the UK, my step-father brought Devin to the Chain Bridge Forge.

"Chain Bridge Forge is an early 19th-century blacksmith's workshop, located in Spalding, Lincolnshire England.
It has been transformed into a living museum, open to the public on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, where visitors can learn all about Spalding's history, blacksmithing and the Forge through various displays, guides and videos. There are also opportunities to have a go at blacksmithing, watch demonstrations and buy iron-forged products.
The Forge is believed to have been purpose-built as a blacksmith's forge in the first half of the 19th century, when it was owned and run by Francis South.[1] The Forge derives its name from the foot-bridge which crosses the River Welland next to the building, and which was originally made of chains. Watercolours by Hilkiah Burgess in the Spalding Gentlemen's Society collection indicate that it was a draw bridge, designed to enable boats and barges to navigate up river from the Wash. At this time there was a working port at Spalding,[2] and the accounts for the period 1850-1860 show that the blacksmith of Chain Bridge Forge was servicing the boats here.[3]

In 1899 the forge came into the possession of Mr George Dodd [4] and remained in the family for three generations. During this period they predominately serviced the community by shoeing horses, and doing agricultural repairs. The twentieth century saw a steady decline in the blacksmith's role,[5] and adapting to this change Mr Geoffery Dodd, George Dodd's grandson, spent much of his career designing and building the frames for floats in Spalding's Flower Parade.[6]

In the 1980s, as Mr Dodd neared retirement and with the building in a poor state of repair, Mr Dodd approached the South Holland District Council to purchase the forge. After two years of discussions the site was purchased from him by the council for the nominal fee of £1, on 20 September 1988.[7] The building was restored in 1991 with the assistance of English Heritage, by Spalding builders R.G. Sharman, on behalf of the District Council."

Devin believes that the Art of Blacksmithing should be brought back and he is one of the youngest pioneers for focusing on this age-old craft. We have all learned so much from him during the time of this interest. Devin visiting the historic Chain Bridge Forge was very exciting for him! I am grateful for my parents for facilitating one of their grandson's passions in life.

~Peace & Love, Dayna

1 comment:

Danielle said...

I love Devin's forge. I wish I could spend the night in it lol