The Cleveland Historical Society is pleased to welcome Mike Allen, resident Blacksmith from the Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum, to speak on Thursday, August 17, at 7:00 p.m.
In celebration of the Erie Canal Bicentennial and to highlight the Chittenango Landing Canal Board Museum, Mike will talk about the history of this unique place, its rediscovery and restoration. Mike began blacksmithing at Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum around 1995 as a volunteer. He initially learned some simple techniques from a blacksmith who did occasional demonstrations at Chittenango Landing in the early days. Mike continued to do his own research and joined New York State Designer Blacksmiths. He gained a handful on knowledge from other experienced blacksmiths and particularly from Harold Hopkinson, the Manlius Historical Society blacksmith.
After taking some time off, Mike recently took early retirement and fulfilled his duties as the local Blacksmith at CLCBM. Mike also took a role as the Historical Interpreter of the canal, dry docks, and blacksmith history.
Mike is an advocate for arts and trades, especially those early trades that apply to dry docks, boat builders and supporting all handmade crafts. He is an inveterate scrounger, scrap metal aficionado and stalker of celebrity blacksmith’s. Mike is a Madison county fan and enthusiastic promoter of the county and it’s history.
The meeting will be held at the Cleveland Historical Society, the former St. James Episcopal Church, located at 6 North Street. The event is free and open to the public.