Jamestown Settlement highlights trades of times past

The Virginia Gazette

For a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the trades of times past, from flint-knapping to quillworking, look no further than Jamestown Settlement.

On June 4 and 5, the museum's Historic Trades Faire features demonstrations of more than a dozen trades, each presented by an expert.

For example, artisan Duane Baldwin will demonstrate quillwork, a traditional Native American art using porcupine or bird quills in embroidery.

Similarly, many of the demonstrated trades involve artistic skill. The Travelling Cookshop and Sutlery will craft pottery, while Western Maryland Hornmacher creates scrimshaw to decorate powder horns.

Some trades have evolved through years. Hollowing Creek Forge, as well as Central Virginia and Tidewater blacksmith guilds, will demonstrate both period and modern blacksmithing methods. Fort Vause Outfitters will showcase leatherwork, with hand woodworking methods presented by Blood and Sawdust.

Other trades are more outdated. For example, the Southeast Virginia Primitive Skills Group will showcase flint-knapping, broom-weaving, tanning and fire-starting.

Visitors can even learn photography techniques of old, with demonstrations of 18th-century silhouettes and 19th-century images on glass and aluminum plates.

The fair coincides with the opening of Jamestown Settlement's special exhibition, "Bartering for a Continent: How Anglo-Indian Trade Shaped America," which runs June 4 through Dec. 10.

Want to go?

When: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., June 4-5

Where: Jamestown Settlement, 2110 Jamestown Road

Admission: $8-$17. Residents of James City and York Counties, City of Williamsburg, including William and Mary students, receive complimentary admission with proof of residency.

For more information, visit historyisfun.org

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