Monday, October 2, 2023

If you’re pining for woodworking, then this upcoming conference might just be for you

(WYDaily/Courtesy of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

Colonial Williamsburg’s upcoming annual Working Wood in the 18th Century Conference will be virtual this January.

This conference theme? “Back to Work: Functional Furniture for Home and Shop.”

Jeffrey Klee, vice president and senior director of architecture at Classical American Homes Preservation Trust, is the conference keynote speaker and will present on exploring the 18th century through the design, use, and evolution of buildings in Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area, according to a news release from the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

Other guests and highlight presenters include Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking founder Bob Van Dyke, upholster Mike Mascelli, and Lost Art Press founder Christopher Schwarz.

Here’s a list of other presentations and discussion panels:

  • A panel discussion on black tradespeople led by Journeyman Carpenter Ayinde Martin, Apprentice Carpenter Harold Caldwell and Journeyman Coach Driver Adam Canaday
  • Master Cabinetmaker Bill Pavlak demonstrating a mahogany writing table with a ratcheting top and a drawer that includes its own ratcheting writing surface
  • The Peyton Randolph House Kitchen Addition from the perspective of enslaved carpenters and laborers with Site Supervisor Janice Canaday and Master Carpenter Garland Wood
  • Journeyman Supervisor Joiner Brian Weldy demonstrating reproduction of William Walters’ traversing mandrel lathe
  • Apprentice cabinetmakers John Peeler and Jeremy Tritchler examining an intricate
    mahogany apothecary’s chest from the London shop of Philip Bell.
  • Apprentice joiners Amanda Doggett, Scott Krogh, and Peter Hudson explore a handful of shop-made woodworking tools and fixtures.

The conference runs Jan. 14-17, 2021. Registration is open through Jan. 1 and is $175. Click here to register. 

Additional information and registration is available on Colonial Williamsburg’s webpage for conferences, linked here, or by contacting Colonial Williamsburg by calling 800-603-0948 or via email at

Information is also available by following Colonial Williamsburg on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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