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Working Life

Blacksmithing

Sharpening a pick in Sandyhills smithy

Description:

 

William MacLellan sharpening a pick in Sandyhills smithy. Dr Werner Kissling, 1959.

 

This photograph shows blacksmith William MacLellan sharpening a pick. He is holding the pick against the anvil and using a hammer to shape the edges which have been heated in the fire.

 

Although the demand for horse-shoeing had decreased in the 1950s, blacksmiths still used their skills to repair tools like this pick. Blacksmiths often made and repaired their own tools as well as those of other tradespeople.

 

In the background of the photograph is the curved cow's horn which forms the handle of the bellows.

 

Dr Werner Kissling (1895-1988) was a German photographer and ethnographer who spent most of his life documenting Scottish crafts, architecture, and agricultural practices. He was associated with Dumfries Museum from the mid-1950s until his death in 1988.

 

With thanks to the School of Scottish Studies Archives for additional information.

Source:
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
PP/KISSLING COLLECTION, blacksmithing/2
Digital Number:
DMPG354n
Creation Date:
1959
Copyright:
Dumfries & Galloway Council