Leatherworking

Mike Campbell

Frontier skills artist

Boone, NC (Watauga County)

Mike Campbell has long been fascinated with history and older ways of living. A knowledgeable and seasoned presenter of American frontier skills, he is, among other things, a skilled woodworker, leatherworker, and knife maker. "Most of those people used their skills to make their own clothes, weapons, and food," he notes. "So you learn[ed] to do a lot of things with your hands, then barter for the rest."

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John Page

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Mike Lowe

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John Page

Leatherworker

Topton, NC (Graham County)

John Page is a Western North Carolinian by birth, but it was in North Georgia, where he grew up, that he learned the skills of fine leatherworking. His adopted hometown of Buford, Georgia, was for many years the home of the Bona Allen leather goods factory, and was sometimes billed as "the leather capitol of the world." "Going through town," Page writes, "you could smell the different leather processes, some good and some bad, but some of the finest leather work was created in these leather shops."

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Mike Lowe

Storyteller and leatherworker

Mount Airy, NC (Surry County)

Mike Lowe grew up in a sawmilling family in Mount Airy hearing labor stories from his father and grandfather and other tales from his grandmother, many of which helped shape his repertoire that he uses as a professional storyteller. His daughter, Maggie, grew up hearing stories from her father, and she has won awards for her own storytelling as a young teenager.

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