Each November NYSDB awards three scholarships for up to one week of blacksmithing instruction at any approved school or with any approved instructor during the following calendar year.  Any NYSDB member who has been a member for at least 1 year and has not received a NYSDB scholarship within the last 3 years is eligible.  Members who have never received a scholarship will be deemed more deserving of one than past recipients.  If  two or more members apply who received scholarships more than 3 years ago, the older the scholarship the greater the advantage.

The scholarships are:

  • One week-long tuition scholarship donated to us by the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC.  NYSDB will cover the room and board to complete it up to a set amount.
  • One week long scholarship is paid for by NYSDB and will cover room, board, and tuition up to a set amount.
  • $500 towards any approved class

(Additional class time beyond one week is encouraged but must be paid for by the student.)

Applications are to be received by the scholarship chairperson by October 1st.  Winners will be announced by November 1st.

Upon being notified of a scholarship award the winner must:

  1. Formally accept or reject the grant within two weeks by email or mail to the scholarship chair.
  2. After accepting the grant, select a specific class, which we realize may take awhile if catalogs for the coming year have not been broadcast.
  3. Get approval of that choice by the scholarship chair.
  4. If awarded the JCCFS scholarship, await receipt from the scholarship chair of the JCCFS “Class Gift Certificate.”  JCCFS will be given your name.  Do not in any way send payment to JCCFS or you will void the grant, and they will not reimburse you.  Simply contact JCCFS and enroll in a class.
  5. If awarded a NYSDB scholarship, pay for tuition, room, and board.  After taking the class send your receipts and proof of having attended the class to the NYSDB Scholarship Committee Chairperson: David J. Woodward, NYSDB Scholarship, 243 State Route 86, Paul Smiths, NY 12970,  The approved total will then be sent to the NYSDB Treasurer for reimbursement.

By not reimbursing until after the class, NYSDB avoids having to deal with unattended classes and refunds.  If you are a scholarship winner and decide not to register for a class, please let us know promptly so that an alternate can be appointed.

Criteria for Awarding Scholarships:

  • Must be an active member for at least 1 year.
  • Financial need (no documented proof necessary).
  • Service to NYSDB and a commitment to sharing your knowledge.
  • Talent for blacksmithing (evidenced by pieces forged).
  • Youth and inexperience.
  • Desire to learn more to advance your skill level.
  • Commitment and access to forging equipment (owned, rented, or borrowed).
  • Letters of recommendation, one of which should come from a forge master.
  • Resume, his should include, in part, number of years blacksmithing and career background.
  • Kind of class and, if possible, specific instructor and class you wish to enroll in and why.
  • What classes or training have you been involved in?  What is your skill level?

Completing the Scholarship Process:

To complete the scholarship process you are asked to share what you have learned from the sponsored class within twelve months after taking it, by:

  1. Making an item influenced by something you learned in the class.  Donate it to the NYSDB through Iron-in-the-Hat at an all-member meeting.
  2. Demonstrating at an NYSDB all-member meeting using what you have learned in the class.
  3. Writing an article about your class or project for The Anvil’s Chorus and website that describes in detail a process useful to blacksmiths that you learned in class so that readers may learn that process.  Please note: the article must be sent to the scholarship committee for review before you submit it to the newsletter editor.


Download the NYSDB Scholarship application.


Here are some of our previous scholarship winners:

2000 Dalle Borrow,
John Fee
2005 Bill Banker,
Donald Keiffer,
Andrei Hand,
Chuck Canterbury
2010 Bill Banker,
Brian Martens
2001 Don Kieffer 2006 Robert Coleman,
Forrest Keeton
2011 Mike Houser,
Mike Nelson
2002 Dave DeSantis,
Isabella Pelissier,
Bill Banker
2007 Harry Heuer,
Joseph Goforth,
Mike Nelson
2012 Lisa Chenfant, William Ott
2003 Harry Heuer 2008 Richard Rightmyer,
Mark Usyk
2013 Candace Martens, Leon Golder
2004 John Fee,
Ernie Neild
2009 John Fee,
Marty Snye
2014  Brian Martens, Peter Parry

ABANA scholarships are also available for their members.  Check their web page, for the particulars.