In the last 30 years there has been a renaissance in the skill and art of shaping hot iron. This renaissance was led by individuals such as Alex Bealer (whose book you’ll find here at Artisan Ideas) and Francis Whitaker whose dedication to the craft inspired many to learn the art and techniques of blacksmithing. ‘A Heritage in Iron’ features a few of the students of Francis Whittaker and the beautiful functional ironwork these modern artists forged for two ranches in southwest Colorado. Featured throughout is the hardware, fixtures, fireplaces, tools, etc. that were individually designed and hand forged.
This is a beautiful book. Architectural Digest magazine dedicated 10 pages to these 2 featured ranch houses in June 2004.
Blacksmiths, mountain cowboys, timber frame artisans, and classic American craftsmanship are celebrated through the pages of A Heritage in Iron, the handsome new book featuring two ranches in southwest Colorado. With the goal of preserving the heritage of the Old West, the Centennial and Last Dollar Ranches, featured in the June 2004 issue of Architectural Digest, have been carefully restored and protected with conservation easements. These ranches will forever be devoted to traditional cattle ranching while providing open space and wildlife habitat. A Heritage In Iron documents the history of the two ranches, the restoration projects, the blacksmith work, and the individuals who forged the hinges, latches, and other ironwork installed on the ranches. Generously illustrated, the collection includes historical sepia-toned and full-color contemporary photographs, along with an assortment of the images ghosted behind the text. Meticulous mechanical drawings and graceful pencil sketches show the work that went into planning and designing the authentic barns, out buildings, and hardware of the two ranches including Dashwood House, the ranch headquarters. Author Rafael Routson speaks of these mountainous ranches and the people who call them home with the informed language of one who knows first-hand the rewards of working with the land.