Wednesday, February 16, 2011

HOW TO HISTORY - Norse Broadaxe

I was approached recently by James & Julie Eason of How to History - who asked if one of my 'work in progress' clips could be included on their (excellent) web site. Part of our initial conversation ran like this, a response to my question about the evaluation process they use for selecting new materials:
I appreciate your concern and vetting is an area that is a constant
struggle. I sometimes take several hours just to write a simple 150 word description for a video. My wife and I have some backgrounds in various arts and crafts but it'd be far from truthful to claim expert status. For that matter, it seems that interpretations of established fact even in scientific circles is in a state of constant flux.

The spectrum of subjects and timelines we're attempting, means there are many areas we're just not going to have depth on. A technique that was applicable in one place and time may not be true for another. We do try to review video content prior to approaching authors for their permission and try to reason whether their interpretations jive with our own understandings. We are definitely trying to stay away from the trap of content for content sake and stand ready to address changes and corrections as we become aware of them. Feedback will always be welcome.

For instance, we had a friend in Canada do a video for us making nails
where due to his limited resources, he accomplished the task without a
nail header. A doable technique but probably not the best. We're
currently looking to supplement his work.

All that said, we try to be mindful that not all of our contributors or
subscribers have full access to period tools and materials. Where
possible, we try to make the distinction between the two.
The clip they selected for a first addition was 'Forging a Norse Broad Axe' Readers may remember commentaries here on this project, the creation of Viking Age ship building equipment for L'Anse aux Meadows NHSC.

I am extremely happy with the introduction James & Julie wrote about the video. I'm sure my readers will find other materials on How to History that they find of interest!
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February 15 - May 15, 2012 : Supported by a Crafts Projects - Creation and Development Grant

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