A workshop on a farm is always a good sign. It is an
indication that the farmer believes in having a place where he
may profitably spend his time on stormy days that would
otherwise be wasted.
To such farmers, and their sons, this book
is addressed, in the hope that they may learn from it some
useful lessons in an easier way than by hard experience. Several
years ago a series of articles on "Farm Black- smithing"
appeared in Farm Stock and Home.
There was then, and has since
been, some inquiry for a book embodying those articles and
covering the subject of iron and steel. work, or so much of it
as the farm mechanic would need to know.
Such a book has now
been prepared, and the author has added to it such knowledge as
he has gained by an experience of seven years in teaching blacksmithing to the farmer boys in the Minnesota School of
Agriculture. If the expert blacksmith complains (hat he finds
nothing to interest him in the book), let him remember that it
is not intended that he should. It was written for beginners.
The chapter on "Saw Filing" was written by Mr. William Boss,
Instructor in Carpentry at the School of Agriculture.
The thoughtful reader will
at once recognize the difficulty of teaching even the
elements of a trade on paper; but I hope By the aid of
illustrations to make reasonably plain all the
operations which enter into the work which the farm
blacksmith will be called upon to do.
Nowadays a farm blacksmith shop may be very cheaply furnished
with all the tools necessary for ordinary work, and the
convenience - yes, the necessity - of a forge on every farm
needs no argument.
time that may often be saved by having at hand the means and
skill to repair damages to machinery and tools is often a much
more important matter than the cash saved by doing one's own
What farmer has not often been
obliged, by some slight breakage, to go to the town or village
shop, - perhaps several miles away, - and there find that he
must wait for several horses to be shod before his little job,
(which he might have done himself if he had the proper tools),
could be attended to by the blacksmith.