Friday, July 31, 2020

2020 CLA Live Auction: RIFLEMAN’S KNIFE by Todd Butler

Collectors of fine knives just can’t seem to acquire too many blades, but it’s a rare thing indeed for a knife to perfectly blend artistic aesthetics with rugged functionality. At this year’s CLF fundraising auction, bidders will have the opportunity to purchase a collector’s grade knife that’s worthy of display in the home or office, but will also perform flawlessly in the field.   

Alabama artist Todd Butler’s offering at this year’s event is a large sized rifleman’s knife with a profile resembling the classic Bowie. This glistening blade was hand forged from 5160 steel and married to a stag handle with an iron s guard and iron end cap. The knife is accompanied with a custom made, heavy weight leather sheath.

Subsequent to a career of nearly thirty years with the United States Marine Corps, artist Todd Butler tackled the traditional art of blacksmithing, studying with fellow craftsmen including Ian Pratt, Joe Seabolt, the House brothers, and Rich McDonald. This auction offering affords bidders the chance to own an exquisitely-made knife from one of the CLA’s most gifted emerging bladesmiths.

For more information on the work of Todd Butler, contact the artist directly:

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Powder Horn by Scott and Cathy Sibley

A buffalo powder horn in the style of the South East,, the elements were taken for a Seminole Horn attributed to Billy Bowlegs. and a Creek powder horn

Photos provided by Scott Sibley.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

2020 CLA Live Auction: HUNTING POUCH SET By Calvin Tanner, Ron Hess and Louise Hess

Pouch: 7” X 8 1/2”     Powder horn: Length 12“  Butt dia. 2 ½“

The design of the pouch was inspired by an existing 18th century pouch. Calvin feels the set is one that represents a common pouch of that era. One that would have been carried by a long hunter or settler coming into the western area of Virginia, the Carolinas, or the Ohio Valley.
The pouch is a convenient size - 7” wide by 8 1\2” deep and has an internal pocket.   

Like the original the pouch, this one is made from bark tanned deer, dyed a deep rich brown.  It is lined with walnut dyed linen cloth and hand sewn with linen thread, approx. 7-9 stitches per inch.  All edges are finished. A nice touch is the scalloped design on the front flap, embellished with an edging of red wool. Inside, Calvin has added a leather reinforcing strip at the top which helps the pouch retain its shape and gives it body. The adjustable strap is edged with incised lines and has a hand forged iron buckle

The chain, vent pick and brush are all hand made. The brush is turned from ebony wood with horse hair bristles.  The pick is cold forged from copper wire.  The chain is based on one excavated from a British fort site. 

The powder horn by Ron Hess is a good representation of one carried by a common man of the 18th century.  It has a good twist that allows it to ride very well against the body. Ron colored the horn to a nice warm coffee color.  It has a sufficient area for future engraving.   
The 1” wide powder horn strap was woven from linen by Louise Hess and dyed with walnut stain giving it a natural look.  It also has a buckle adjustment (hand forged), very typical of 18th century work.

These artists can be contacted at:

Calvin Tanner:

Ron Hess:

To see all the Artists' contributions to the 2020 CLF Live Fund Raising Auction, visit our website at

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Lehigh Valley Rifle from 2019 by Jeffrey Lore

This is my interpretation of a Lehigh valley rifle just post Revolutionary war showing strong Moravian influence in its architecture and decoration. I have been building since the late 1980’s.

Photography by Track of the Wolf.

Monday, July 27, 2020

New Work by John Miller

A couple of months ago I got a copy of William Ivey's book on North Carolina schools of gun making and it resulted in the rifle pictured below.  Its not an exact copy of any one gun as as I have mixed elements that I liked from several different “schools” of similar guns made in North Carolina during the later part of the 18th century, and added a few elements of my own.  

Copy and photographs supplied by John Miller.

Friday, July 24, 2020

"The Longrifle Makers of the Salem School" Display by Michael Briggs at the 2019 Tennessee Kentucky Rifle Show

Michael Briggs display at the 2019 Tennessee Kentucky Rifle Show was on the "Salem School" which is his newest book with rifles, powder horns, maps and other materials that are featured in the book.

More photos can be found here.

The Longrifle Makers of the Salem School
$80. hardcover plus $6. postage
$60. softcover plus $5. postage

Other Books available by Michael: 
Michael Briggs
103 Battle Road
Greensboro, NC 27410

The Longrifle Makers of Mecklenburg County
$40.00 plus $4.00 shipping

The Longrifle Makers of Guilford County
$40.00 plus $4.00 shipping
A review can be found here.

Piedmont North Carolina Banded Powder Horns
$40.00 plus $4.00 shipping

The Longrifle Makers of the Rowan School
$40.00 plus $4.00 shipping

Guilford Under the Stars and Bars
$44.95 plus $4.00 shipping