Artisans continue the folk arts tradition at Great Camp Sagamore, supported by the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA.) These talented traditional artists who have learned from their forebears demonstrate for tours in July and August.
Visitors who see presentations at 10am or 1:30pm report a greatly enhanced tour experience. Great Camp Sagamore is proud of its long partnership with NYSCA and is pleased to be a place where people can learn about traditional arts from these wonderful people.
We are proud to include the following artisans during tours at Great Camp Sagamore:
Along with repairing many of Sagamore’s heritage rugs over the years, Helen also braids and donates an original-design rug each year, which is offered in the Silent Auction as part of Sagamore’s annual Benefit for Historic Preservation. Helen frequently offers a day-long Rug-Braiding Workshop, as well as a shorter, introductory workshop for guests attending the Sagamore Benefit.
Cedar Canvas Canoe Building
Pat has taught courses in boat-building, paddle-making and canoeing skills at Sagamore for many years, through the Adirondack Boat-Building and Waters Skills School which he helped to found more than a decade ago. .
Herb & Native Plant Gardening
Growing up in the North Country, Jane helped her parents raise and sell gladioli and berries from their home garden, which helped to foster a early love of plants and flowers. As a young woman, she sold vegetables and set out to learn everything she could about the traditional uses of herbs for health and nutrition. When her friends began asking for more and more of her herbal tea mixes, Jane started a small business, Underwood Herbs, to reach a wider audience. Long before the current interest in “eating local,” Jane advocated for farmers markets and built her business through direct contact with her customers. All of Jane’s products are made from sustainably-harvested wild plants. At the end of summer, Jane begins cutting balsam boughs for the hundreds of traditional holiday wreaths she makes and sells each December. We welcome Jane to Great Camp Sagamore. [Photo courtesy: Martha Cooper/TAUNY Archives]
Chris has taught her caning skills to various groups at Sagamore, including some of our Grands Camps offered through Road Scholar. She’s also repaired many of chairs used by guests throughout camp, as well as the seat in the restored Adirondack Guide Boat in the Carriage Shed.
Adirondack Guide Boat Building
Among his many services to Sagamore over the years, Chris helped us to restore the original 'Caleb Chase Adirondack Guide Boat' that is on display in the Carriage Shed and can be seen on the Sagamore tour. He also makes his guide boats available to Sagamore guest who want to try their hand at rowing this unique craft.
Dave continues to practice the ancient craft of working iron, not as a farrier shoeing horses, but as a toolmaker. He makes and creates building hardware, lighting fixtures, and custom iron work like that made for the Adirondack Great Camps by staff blacksmiths of old. A seventh-generation native of the Adirondack High Peaks region, he is proud to own the anvil brought long ago from the old family farm in Vermont. David has made or repaired countless tools and accessories at Sagamore over the years, from locks and hinges to fixtures and utensils. He also donates a handmade piece for Sagamore’s annual fundraising benefit, each August. David also works with Sagamore's Grandparent / Grandchild program, and has been involved with the NYS Art Teachers Association Summer Institute at Sagamore.
Rustic Furniture Making
Bill is something of an institution at Sagamore, having taught courses on Adirondack flora and fauna, guiding, storytelling and stick-carving, as well as the pack basket-weaving and rustic furniture he demonstrates.
Wagon-wheel Rug Weaving
Growing up in a French American community near Cohoes, NY, Francoise eventually learned the craft of making small throw rugs from her Quebec-born mother-in-law. She began by using scrap materials from the textile mills that were an important industry in the area at the time. For forms, she uses wooden wheels from old carriages or wagons from which the hub and spokes have been removed and nails added to the rims to attach the individual strips of fabrics. This rural farmhouse tradition seems to have nearly disappeared; visit Francoise and our other folk artisans this summer.
Tours are $16 for adults and $8 for school-aged children. Seniors receive a $2 discount. Tours are always free for Sagamore members and for active military personnel.
We look forward to welcoming you to Great Camp Sagamore, click here
for a tour preview.