Full Chisel Blog

November 6, 2012

VOTE: North American Woodworking Hall of Fame

Filed under: Historical Material,Of Interest,Uncategorized — Stephen Shepherd @ 11:47 am

Where do you think it should be located?  And don’t you think it is about time one existed?  Other activities pat themselves on the back, why shouldn’t we?

There are many fine craftsmen and women that should be nominated and inducted into this prestigious institution.  If we don’t do it, who will?

So take your time right now and make a comment, and VOTE!



  1. It should be in Colorado Springs (because that is where I am trying to move). I nominate Dan Donaldson for induction into the woodworking hall of fame.

    Comment by Mike Donaldson — November 6, 2012 @ 12:13 pm

  2. As much as I’d like it to be in the mid-west, it should probably be out east somewhere.

    and as I’ll nominate Roy Underhill. though after being given a sainthood, perhaps a hall of fame isn’t anything special.

    Comment by Jeremy — November 6, 2012 @ 12:40 pm

  3. Stephen,

    There is a lot of fine woodworking stuff on the East coast, so I think that it would be a good home for North American Woodworking Hall of Fame. I’m on the West coast of Canada, so you can’t call me biased!

    I’ll nominate Michael Fortune, as he is well-recognized, accomplished, and helps educate other woodworker. Did I mention he’s Canadian too?


    Comment by Chris Wong — November 6, 2012 @ 1:20 pm

  4. I’ve never been east of Minnesota but I’m thinking Boston because of the Bennet St School. Sam Maloof hands down!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Douglas Scott — November 6, 2012 @ 4:08 pm

  5. Probably one of these three places.

    1. Philadelphia
    2. New York
    3. Boston

    Posthumous inductions would include some of the obvious players like Krenov and Maloof. For those still living, I’d nominate Phil Lowe.


    Comment by Eric — November 6, 2012 @ 4:29 pm

  6. The great state of Pennsylvania. It has sacrificed its great forests for woodworkers everywhere. And I nominate The Wife who has forced men everywhere to spend more time in their shops.

    Comment by Dan — November 6, 2012 @ 5:22 pm

  7. I wholly agree it should be located in Eastern US, I don’t know of a town in particular, but I would prefer a small(er) town.

    I would nominate Maloof, Krenov, and Nakashima.

    As much as I admire and enjoy Roy Underhill, I’m not sure if I could nominate him. From what I have found so far, he isn’t one that has came up with unique designs or fabulous designs. A wonderful teacher and entertainer hands down (I would hope), just not one I find myself looking for his work or reading biographies about him.

    Comment by Chad Gorshing — November 6, 2012 @ 8:31 pm

  8. Lancaster, Pennsylvania

    And you could start by installing all the winners of the Society of American Period Furniture Cartouche award.

    Comment by Mike Holden — November 7, 2012 @ 8:06 am

  9. I vote Philly. The best period furniture came from Philly, its a great location with lots to see (you’d get a lot of foot traffic).

    Comment by Zach Dillinger — November 7, 2012 @ 8:32 am

  10. I like many of the suggestions above. Philadelphia does seem a very logical choice and I would have no problem if it happened. However, if we look at the addresses of some of the most famous Halls of Fame it appears they have little to do with appropriateness or accessibility. Cooperstown, NY for the Baseball Hall of Fame? Not exactly a central, accessible location. Cleveland for the Rock n’ Roll Hall? Memphis seems more logical. The mind boggles. So, I would like to recommend Phoenix, AZ. The arid climate would help prevent rust on some of the tool displays and it makes as much sense as any other Hall location. As a disclaimer, I reside in Kentucky.

    As to people to elect,all the Old Masters like Duncan Phyfe, et al. deserve admission. As far as modern woodworkers, many are deserving for various reasons; James Krenov, Sam Maloof, Tim Baker, Glen St. Charles, Roy Underhill, Peter Follansbee, Jenny Alexander, and Norm Abrams (whether you agree with his methods or not Norm has brought many, many people into woodworking). I’d vote for you, too, Stephen. Your “experimental archaeology” alone has advanced the understanding of how wood was worked in the past.

    Comment by Doug F. — November 7, 2012 @ 12:55 pm

  11. This is a interesting topic, I think that the Hall should be in a popular area, easy to access and full of information. The Hall shouldn’t be just to show off the makers but to also educate. If we are talking about period furniture then the East Coast is a most, and only CT, PA, MA, NY, MD are what comes to mind. I just don’t think a Hall will be successful in CA or in the west coast. This will be a huge undertaking, but would love to help. I vote for the HALL.

    Comment by Freddy Roman — November 8, 2012 @ 8:20 am

  12. Boston or Richmond. So many worthy honorees Wharton Esherick, has not been mentioned. Osolnik is another. I also believe that the Buck brothers and some other tool makers must be ibcluded

    Comment by Ron Harper — November 8, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

  13. My first thought, like others, was Boston or Philadelphia. The first problem I had (thinking in terms of styles) is the mismatch – seeing Virginia furniture in Philly, for example, just looks wrong. And what about more contemporary furniture?

    So…where do you go to cover the most types/styles of woodworking?

    Then, I started thinking you would not want a big city. You’d want a community that cared about about woodworking…or…ahh…cared about wood… That is when the lightbulb went off.

    To me, the best location does not have anything to do with styles of woodworking – it has to do with WOOD. Someplace that is surrounded by what we all love, trees… That makes the most sense. And any style of woodworking/furniture would seem appropriate.

    Of course, any tropical location is probably out of the question (that would create some strange vacation issues) – so I started thinking eastern hardwoods. So, I propose somewhere in north central or north western Pennsylvania (conflict of interest alert – I live in southeastern PA, but my wife grew up in northwestern PA). There are a lot of nice towns up in hardwood country that would adopt such an establishment (particularly if it means folks would come spend money). Someplace up off of Route 6 – for example, Kane calls itself the Black Cherry Capital of the world. I bet you could get a hardwood dealer to sponsor something like this.

    Imagine an awesome hardware store associated with the hall of fame (to pay the bills).

    Just my $0.02

    Comment by BruceLove — November 9, 2012 @ 12:07 pm

  14. Note: I meant to say awesome “hardwood store” (as in hardwood lumber store) associate with the Hall of Fame. There should be a small woodworking school as well.

    Comment by BruceLove — November 9, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

  15. The big cities mentioned already have lots of galleries and schools and ww associations. I’d vote for Asheville, NC. It has a strong woodworking community to rely on for assistance, is a big tourist draw, and is a sophisticated town with a small-town feel. It would be perfect.
    As for hall-of-famers, the obvious, with those influencing others topping the list: Al Carpenter, Maloof, Krenov, Nakashima, Norm, Roy Underhill, Michael Dunbar, Bruce Hoadley, Tage Frid, Nick Cook, Ernie Conover, David Ellsworth, Michael Dresdner, even Danny Proulx. And, question, would they have to be Americans? The list would be long. 😉

    Comment by BarbS — November 11, 2012 @ 9:23 pm

  16. La Jolla, Calif. If I’m going to visit somewhere, it might as well be warm and by the ocean.

    Comment by Gary Roberts — November 13, 2012 @ 7:32 pm

  17. I would recommend Hartford CT. it seems that it would be centrally located for a lot of the woodworkers and furniture makers and schools teaching on the east coast. i would also like to add my second to nominate Peter Follansbee to the hall of fame for his historical work, and W. Patrick Edwards for his work on french marquetry.

    Comment by Jeremy Nagel — November 15, 2012 @ 1:47 pm

  18. I would like to nominate Asheville,NC. Asheville has a rich history of woodworking which continues to thrive. Michael Dunbar has already been mentioned. He has done groundbreaking work in the windsor chair revival. Brian Boggs for his work in Asheville through the Boggs Collective which enables woodworkers to excel and flourish. He also is involved in the international Green Wood project.

    Comment by Joseph — November 23, 2012 @ 10:16 am

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