I have been making brooms since about 1995. I am still having a lot of fun doing it and learning as I go. The picture to the left was taken at a show we do at Malabar Farms near Mansfield Ohio, there is a link to it on my favorites page. When we go to shows we use a canopy and we dress in period clothing. When I say we, my wife also does the shows with me, she has learned to do the cob web chaser, she does this when I take a break. Also at some of the shows she plays her dulcimer which I built for her from a kit. She has learned to play it by teaching herself the notes, although she has had some thirty years playing the piano and other musical instruments. Another craft we have been doing at some of the shows is rope making. This has turned out to be fun for the kids as they get to see how rope use to be made along with the history and making of brooms.
The main type of shows we like to do are the heritage shows as they are geared more towards history. But we have found that more and more craft shows are trying to get people who demonstrate old time crafts.
The reason for my interest in brooms is because my Great Grandfather was a broom maker from the early 1910's until the mid 1940's. He was blind and this is how he made his living along with a small disability pay from the government. He learned to make brooms at the School for the Blind in Columbus Ohio. He made standard kitchen brooms, a barn broom, and I think a whisk broom. He would go door to door around Marion Ohio and sell his brooms. I knew my great grandfather but not when he was a broom maker. I was 14 when he passed away and really had no idea that I would be interested in broom making years later. I have his broom hammer that he used when he made brooms and I still use it today to make my brooms.
My Great Grandfathers Broom Hammer (courtesy Columbus Dispatch)
My Great Grandfather
Last updated: 01-16-2016