Blacksmith Shop 1944-1975
The blacksmith was an important figure in early farming towns, repairing broken farm
machinery, doing decorative metalwork, and shoeing horses. The blacksmith's importance did not fade with time:
blacksmith Gustav Weber ran a successful business in Rimbey from 1944 until 1975. The original building was not
sturdy enough to be moved to the park so this replica of his shop was built in the early 1980’s by members of the
The inside of the shop shows a blend of old-fashioned and modern techniques: there is a
modern welding unit just inside and to the left, a little further inside is a traditional blacksmith's anvil of the
kind that has been in use for centuries.
Forge had a tray where a charcoal fire could be lit to heat metal, and was attached to a forge blower. The
forge blower provided a steady stream of air to feed the fire if the crank was turned. (There is another forge
blower, not attached to anything, near the right-hand wall). On the floor near the forge was a water trough used to
cool pieces of hot metal.
provided a solid surface where metal that had been softened in the forge fire could be pounded into shape. Leaning
against the wall behind the anvil is a large bellows. They were an earlier version of the forge blower which was
pumped by hand to feed air to the forge fire.
On the floor in front of the anvil is an Iron
Bender. This machine shaped hot iron into a curve. One of its early uses was to make circular iron wheel
rims for wooden wagon wheels.
Farther back in the shop, slightly to the right of the forge is a Trip Hammer. Huge belts attached to a motor drove this machine. Stepping on
the foot pedal harnessed the power of the motor to pound a piece of metal flat.
Chemicals were combined to make acetylene, which was used in welding.
←Back to Main Historical