Overview ABS Educational Programs
The objectives of the educational programs of the American Bladesmith Society are to inform and educate the public about the art, science, technology, history, and culture relating to forged edged tools, weapons, and artifacts.
It is with these educational objectives in mind that the American Bladesmith Society is proud to be associated with Texarkana College, Haywood Community College, and the New England School of Metalwork which offer Bladesmithing courses taught by experienced ABS Master Smiths and Journeyman Smiths.
The ABS also sponsors weekend Hammer-Ins and Youth Programs throughout the year in different regions of the United States. Last year, there were ABS Hammer-Ins in North Carolina, Kansas, Ohio, Arkansas, Maine, Tennessee, and California. Our events schedule for this year is posted on the ABS website and provides the dates and details of these educational programs.
The Moran School of Bladesmithing at Texarkana College was the first bladesmithing school in the world. Classes are offered by Texarkana College, Community Services Division, in cooperation with the American Bladesmith Society, Inc. and The Pioneer Washington Restoration Foundation.
All Bladesmithing courses are taught in Washington, Arkansas, in a replica of a one-room school house and a stable/barn that blends in with the old-time atmosphere of the town, also known as Old Washington Historic Park. The school consists of a modern classroom in addition to the work area which includes six forges, six anvils, six grinders, three trip hammers, work benches and related tools.
Washington, Arkansas is located in southwest Arkansas, 8 miles north of Hope, Arkansas on State Highway 4, approximately 35 miles from Texarkana. This restored village of fewer than 200 residents dates back to 1824.
Haywood Community College is located in the mountains of Western North Carolina. The campus is located in Clyde, NC and is a designated arboretum with many natural classrooms. It is in this setting that the Bladesmithing School is located and classes are offered by Haywood Community College in cooperation with the American Bladesmith Society, Inc.
The Bladesmithing School at Haywood Community College is well equipped with forges, anvils, grinders, power hammers, and assorted bladesmithing tools.
The New England School of Metalwork is a full 501(C)3 non-profit educational facility devoted to the promotion and strengthening of metalworking skills. It is located in beautiful Auburn, Maine, near the coast. The concept of the school was developed by Maine Oxy and Dereck Glaser, a local artisan metalsmith. After several years of individuals inquiring about ornamental and artistic metal working instruction the decision was made to build the school. They set to the task of designing and planning an metalworking studio/lab with forging, blacksmithing, metal sculpture and welding technologies as the main source of inspiration.
The bladesmithing studio at the New England School of Metalwork has been designed to integrate both traditional and contemporary tooling. With full quantities of tools and equipment to accommodate up to seven students, each of the four large coal forges and three gas forges are established as their own forging stations. Only a few steps away in any direction you will find two treadle hammers and two pneumatic power hammers, post vises, belt grinders and racks of hand tools. Their ever growing assortment of traditional hand and power tools provide the student with the tooling required for many processes.