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The Honourable Company of Horners has created this Supplementary Blog to enhance the HCH's regular website. We will use this Blog to give you information that does not easily fit within the structure of the other website.
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Class Announcement

June 2014 – The Second Advanced Horn Class at the Boulton Historic Site was a Success.

The second Advanced Horn class held at the Jacobsburg Historical Society Craft Center took place on June 7th and 8th in Nazareth, PA. This followed the first class of last year where John DeWald and Frank Willis taught a capacity group of 10 students the art of scrimshaw and horn decoration.

 This year John and Frank offered a program to teach students how to make a flat horn with a screw-tip. Hoping to match last year’s full enrollment, they were not prepared for the response they received. 16 students signed up for the class! It was not possible to accommodate that many students for the weekend program. The 2 HCH instructors put their heads together and were able to find a second weekend and split the class in half. The first class, held in June taught 8 horners how to flatten a horn and fashion a screw tip.    

The second class is scheduled for the 6th and 7th of September to instruct the remaining 8 students to do the same.

John and Frank worked as a team. John handled the lathe and the turning of the screw tips and Frank oversaw the shaping of the horn, installation of the base plug and the final finish. All the students made great horns. The remaining question is – what do these 2 Horn Guild instructors have planned for next year, perhaps a horn cup with a chimed in bottom?

If you are interested in attending one of these classes taught by HCH members, contact Frank at: 908-246-8935908-246-8935 or

The students standing left to right: Frank Willis – Instructor, Meg Weinhofer, Brian Morris, John DeWald – Instructor, Jim Steele, Roy Finocchio, Gary Steele. Kneeling left to right: Rod Shaker, Jakob Griffing Bianco, Andrew Albanese


The students Left to right: Hoyt Masterton, Jason Moyer, Rich Hujsa, Andrew Albanese, Todd Searle, John Kochey, Richard Seidel and Ed Weinhofer.

March 2014- The 6th Annual Basic Powder Horn Class at Boulton Historic Site was a Success.

The 6th Annual Basic Powder Horn Class at Boulton Historic Site (Nazareth, PA) was a great success.

2014 Basic Horn Class at Boulton.

For the 6th year members of The Honourable Company of Horners were active in teaching the basic horn making course . This class is held at the Craft Center located on the grounds of the Bolton Gun Works, where the Henry family made firearms for over a hundred years. The site is managed by the Jacobsburg Historical Society (

 Six students attended and each made a beautiful, early period stepped down horn. This task was completed in four Saturday afternoons in March 2014. One student was a 15 year old that already won a ribbon at Dixon’s last year in the junior category. He was invited to take the course at no charge. Every year Frank Willis, the instructor (and HCH Journeyman Horner), sponsors a youngster who gets to attend the class at no charge.

 Many of the students that take the class become Horn Guild members and they are all encouraged to enter their work at Dixon’s Gunmakers Fair in Kepton, Pennsylvania.

 A special HCH thanks to Guild members, Hoyt Masterdon, Gary Steele, and John Kochey, who assisted Frank Willis in teaching the class. Also, a big thank you to Roland Cadle and Village Restorations who donating the horns that were used in the class.

 All the fees collected are donated to the Jacobsburg Historical Society. The next class is scheduled for January 2015. For more information or to reserve a spot contact Frank Willis at (908-246-8935908-246-8935) or

November 7-8, 2014 – The Screw-tip Powder Horn Class is BACK! – Hollidaysburg, PA

April 11-12, 2014 – Horn Class by Roland Cadle and Art DeCamp – Hollidaysburg, PA

Build a Powder Horn and then color and decorate it with period dyes and stains!

Success! – Horn Skills Class at 24th Annual Conner Prairie Arms Making Workshop

Ten participant horns, plus the one made as a “demonstrator” during the class by instructor Art DeCamp.

This year’s 4-1/2 day long horn skills class at the 24th Annual Conner Prairie Arms Making Workshop in Fishers, Indiana, focused on each participant making their own replica of the Early Philadelphia style internal screw-tip powder horn.  The class started on Saturday, October 5 and concluded on Wednesday, October 9, 2013 with all ten participants completing a fine Early Philadelphia powder horn with screw-tip, applied collar, and decorative band.

The class began with a lecture on screw-tip powder horns in general and the specific historic significance of the Early Philadelphia style.  Several original examples of this style were on hand for reference, along with additional contemporary examples.  Following the lecture, question and answer period and distribution of the course syllabus, work began in earnest.

Instructor Art DeCamp and his assistant Jim Pease helped all the participants in the class learn how to heat and shape the horn body, turn its ends true in the lathe, cut and fit a horn band, drill, bore and fit the applied collar, turn and thread the internal screw tip, and develop their lathe turning skills on both horn and wood to the point that each was able to produce a very nice rendition of the French & Indian War period style horn that was made in Philadelphia, PA in the late 1750′s through the early 1770′s.  With four individual turned horn pieces, and one wood piece this internal screw-tip style horn is one of the most complex types that can be replicated.

The participants came from near and far and included:
  • Daniel Boling, Maryville, TN
  • Jeff Gier, West Liberty, OH
  • David Gundrum, Fortville, IN
  • Walter Mabry, Jackson, MS
  • Rex Reddick, Denison, TX
  • Chris  DeCamillis, Traverse City, MI
  • Joe Rushton, Tipton, IN
  • Brian Shrader, Marion, IN
  • Glenn Sutt, Olympia, WA
  • Kevin Walden, Russiaville, IN

Front row kneeling (L to R): Art DeCamp, instructor, Joe Rushton, Daniel Boling, Jeff Gier, Back row standing (L to R) Brian Shrader, Walter Mabry, Jim Pease, instructor, Dave Gundrum, Chris DeCamillis, Kevin Walden, Rex Reddick, Glenn Sutt (standing on right).

To see more of Art DeCamp’s Master level work, go to his website at:

Nov. 1-2, 2013 – Horn Class by Roland Cadle and Art DeCamp – Hollidaysburg, PA

The class is being held at Village Restorations, Inc. in Hollidaysburg, PA. Click Here for their website.

October 5-8, 2013 – Recreating the Philadelphia Screw-Tip Horn Class at Conner Prairie

24th Annual Traditional Arts & Arms Making Workshop
Saturday-Tuesday, October 5-8
8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Wednesday, October 9
8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

This class is sold out, but Conner Prairie is taking names for a waiting list.

Further develop your horn-working skills through the construction of an early style internal screw-tip Philadelphia horn. Noted hornsmith Art Decamp will cover a wide variety of topics, from the history and architecture of early horns to many tips and techniques for reproducing period-correct powder horns. This horn will have a turned tip as well as turned and applied collars. Other techniques covered will include proper horn selection, scraping, heating, shaping and coloring of horn.
$580/$560 member (tools required).

For more information see Conner Prairie Interactive History Park’s Website.

Art DeCamp 2012 Conner Prairie Class.

The Advanced Horn Class at Jacobsburg Education Center was a Great Success. (June 8-9, 2013)

The first ever advanced horn class was held at the new education center at Jacobsburg Historical Society on June 8 and 9, 2013. The class kicked-off on Saturday morning with 10 students in attendance. The day began with an explanation of the history of scrimshaw and how it became to be called engraving and then moved into the preparation of the surface to engrave. The pre-flattened horn panels were sanded and prepped creating a large cloud that soon covered all and everything in the center in a nice layer of aromatic horn dust. The class then moved on to applying the artwork (a Fraktur design by journeyman John DeWald). A break for lunch and it was then on to engraving. The day ended with students in various stages but all thoroughly enjoying the work and conversation and questions abounded throughout the day.

Day 2 started with a brief overview of lettering and engraving styles and then the students went to work. For several hours with the exception of a helping hand or advice from John DeWald, you could of heard a pin drop in the center. Everyone applied themselves in their own artistic fashion and soon the horn panels were nearing completion. A short lunch break later, as preparations were made to age the panels, Frank Willis took the reins and aspects of staining and coloring horn were discussed and shown. John Dewald also demonstrated engrailing techniques and then it was time for finishing touches on the horn panels. Rit dye was used and then waxing and buffing and the panels were done!! John DeWald spent time adding color to his panel and then graciously donated his original Fraktur drawing and polychrome horn panel for a give-a-way to the students. All names were put in a hat and Gus Tabor’s name was drawn as the recipient.

After all was completed and the center returned to its clean state, Frank Willis asked each student for a critique of the class. Overall everyone conveyed a good response and offered suggestions for improvements for future classes. Additional advanced horn classes are being planned with projects to include: A flat, screw-tip horn; a horn ditty box and a horn cup/tumbler. Details will follow as plans and dates are finalized. We would like to extend thanks to Jacobsburg Historical Society, Roland Cadle, and to all the students for their attendance and patience. It is with great pride that the guild offers these classes; holding to our purpose to remain dedicated to the research, preservation, and education of horn workwork. Stay Tuned as more great times are a-coming.

If you are interested in attending a future horn class at Jacobsburg, please call Frank Willis at 908-246-8935 or email The basic horn class will be held in January 2014 and the advanced horn class will be late May or June of 2014.

Saturday Powder Horn Workshop in Lenior, NC on August 3rd, 10th and 17th, 2013.

>>Click Here to go to the Ft. Defiance website for more information.<<

June 8-9, 2013 Horn Engraving and Coloring with John DeWald at Jacobsburg Historic Site

The advanced horn class at Jacobsburg will be a class focusing on the engraving, engrailing and staining of horn.  All materials will be provided but students are encouraged to bring a finished horn or horn object they wish to engrave, engrail, or stain.  They are also welcome to bring along any engraving tools that they are comfortable in using.  The planned project for engraving is a Fraktur design on a pre-flattened piece of cow horn. The Fraktur design will allow for the teaching/explanation of the different styles of engraving in one piece of artwork.

The class will start with the preparation of the surface by scraping/sanding and then focus on engraving with final steps to be the application of ink to the design and the staining/coloration of the horn to add an aged appearance.

This class will be taught by Journeyman John DeWald and will be held over the weekend of June 8 and 9th at the Jacobsburg Craft Center.  The cost is $120.00.

If any one is interested in more information about this Advanced Horn Decorating Class, please contact Frank Willis at 908-246-8935 or John DeWald at 570-220-6450. Class size is limited, so please let us know if you wish to attend.


To see some samples of John DeWald’s work, please go to his website at