by Jake Fraser, staff writer
Supervisor Doug Bradley, Bill Bauman of FMTS and a few students from the Fine woodworking crew attended an antique tools conference Nov. 10 in Bethania, North Carolina.
The conference was a local area meeting for North Carolina’s faction of The Midwest Tool Collectors Association. It’s the largest tool collectors organization in the world, reaching all 50 states as well as Australia, Canada, and the European Union—“a non-profit organization devoted to Studying, Preserving, and Sharing the Knowledge of Tools.” The Mid-West Tool Collectors Association has made a wealth of literary contributions as well additions to institutions like Smithsonian.
The conference was hosted in an enormous brick church in the small town of Bethania. Admittance is usually limited to paying Mid-West Tool Collectors Association members, but the students that attended were graciously allowed entrance as Guest Members. Young Warren Wilson students stood out in contrast to the members.
“There was a lot of old people there,” said Dan Warner, one student who attended the trip.
Warner and seniors Collin Garrity and Sabine McCalla also attended and purchased tools with their own money. McCalla bought a tool that can shave slices of wood thin enough to be used as paper. Bauman bought an Auger bit set and Warner purchased a hatchet head.
The crew’s trip to Bethania proved to be fruitful. In the near future, Fine Woodworking plans to travel to Tennessee to visit renowned chair maker Curtis Buchanan. Buchanan specializes in hand carved Windsor chairs.
Students were happy to have an opportunity to experience such an event. All three students spent their precious money on old tools, only to return grinning.