Sunday, November 27, 2016

footballs and chisels.

Hans Thorjbörnsson, historian at Nääs, sent me a list of tools purchased at Nääs between 1900 and 1920, pointing out that my E.A. Berg chisel would be found someplace upon it, and it may be surprising to some that tools and equipment would include the following:
Buys 24 footballs No. 4 and No. 5 soccer balls 24 through Aug. Abrahamson & Co.
There are a couple important lessons in this simple quote. The first is to re-emphasize the role of physical fitness at Nääs. The school was not just about woodworking education, but considered the whole child and the teaching of the whole child in its training of teachers. The second point is to re-illustrate the role of August Abrahamson's business in Sweden of the time. August Abrahamson was one of the most successful businessmen in Sweden in the latter part of the 19th century, and it was his generosity that fueled the expansion of Educational Sloyd to every part of the world including the US, Cuba, and Japan. His business sold everything from wax paper, to sports equipment, and he spent his resources generously to support the growth of character and intellect of children throughout the world.

Hans ended his note to me with a note of serious concern. How could Americans, and particularly American women, have voted for Donald Trump? It is a question I ask myself. It is certainly distressing to me and most of the world that they did so.

In the meantime, I am headed home from Colorado, and will be back in my wood shop and familiar stomping grounds this afternoon.

Make, fix, create, and extend to others the likelihood of learning likewise.

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