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Edited by Barry Penhale.

Scarborough (ON), Consolidated Amethyst Communications, c1982.
64pp, paper, $4.95.
ISBN 0-920474-24-1.

Grades 4 and up.
Reviewed by Gary Robertson.

Volume 11 Number 2.
1983 March.

This little book begins to deal with the problem of how to recognize our talented "old-timers." There is such a variety of skills, stories, and personalities to be explored across Canada. We all know of seniors who are painters, poets, carpenters, and craftsmen with so many talents. Grassroots Artisans is a book about three of those special people: Walter Stansell, blacksmith; Dan Sarazin, canoe-maker; and Henry Taylor, wood carver. Each of these men have preserved a part of our Canadian heritage in their own way. They have shared in their skills and enriched our appreciation of the indigenous craftsman.

The format of the book is based on a series of questions and verbatim answers in which each craftsman describes the tools, materials, skills, and local stories. Included with the text are forty-nine descriptive photographs. The result is an impressive gallery of human ingenuity. First there are Walter Stansell's working models of locomotives, threshers, and tractors. Then Dan Sarazin describes the construction techniques for birch-bark canoes. Finally there is Henry Taylor's wood mastery from log-cabins and canoes to carved horses and figures.

Through this book we can appreciate the work and lives of these three craftsmen. It is light enjoyable reading, but its value is more archival than educational. My only hope is that the editor-compiler, Barry Penhale will travel to all parts of Canada to honour all of our great grassroots artisans in the same way.

Gary Robertson, Thorn C. I., Regina, SK.
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