Ever since the introduction of manual training into this country it has been in a continual state of growth and adjustment. Wood has always been the principal medium and while there are numerous schools that have established expensive machine-shops, foundries, and forge-shops, there still remain the large majority of schools where the expense of equipping such shops is prohibitive. These schools feel the need of a new medium, and an enlargement of the field of tools and processes, and they are turning to art metalwork as a solution of their problem, because of the inexpensive equipment required, its perfect correlation with design and drawing, and the easy, almost unconscious, acquirement of knowledge by the student in the fields of chemistry, mineralogy, art, metallurgy, and physics.
The problems presented in this book follow the lines of the best technical methods derived from experience as a practical silversmith, and the illustrations used are almost entirely the work of students who worked under regular manual training school conditions. They adhere to the principles of the arts and crafts movement, that the elements of design should be considered in this order : the object must be suited to its use; the construction must be honest and sound; the decoration must be adapted to the material, tools, and processes, and must in nowise interfere with the use or weaken the construction of the object. The problems are given in such sequence that the old tools and processes are reviewed, and at the same time new tools and processes are introduced in each new problem. This is one of the fundamentals of pedagogy, that must be considered when outlining any new course for school work.
It is hoped by the author that those instructors who make use of this book will also make use of and develop the correlations that have been suggested here, and that are further developed in the text, thereby enriching the content of their courses.
All of the designs and practically all of the work used as illustrations in this book are the products of students who worked in classes of twenty or more under ordinary school conditions. It would have been a much easier matter to use as illustrations the best work of well known craftsmen, but it was felt that that method would react unfavorably in that it might discourage some from attempting the work at all, and cause others to begin on designs or pieces that they would not be capable of accomplishing.
Finally, I wish at this time to thank the students of Bradley Polytechnic Institute and of The Arts and Crafts School of Columbus, Ohio, and private students at other places, for the many helpful suggestions received, and for the photographs of their work. Without the inspiration of these students this book would never have been written.
Arthur F. Payne,