Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites

In association with the Smithsonian Institution


Blacksmithing 101

Discover how colonial blacksmiths made the intricate hinges, door handles, hooks, and decorative objects you see everywhere in Historic Moravian Bethlehem in Blacksmithing 101.

Take your experience beyond watching, and get into the soot with the Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites Blacksmithing 101 course. Staged in our historical 1750 Smithy in the Colonial Industrial Quarter, watch, learn, and hone your skills with one of our professional blacksmiths using the same tools of the trade that were available in the colonial days. This course is designed to grow with the learner, building on skills learned from class to class. Book your beginners course today and spark a new passion.

Know someone who would enjoy the class? Blacksmithing 101 gift certificates will be available when classes are able to resume.

Classes will be scheduled when CDC guidelines permit.

The fun doesn't have to stop after your beginner class. Contact Keith Sten for more information regarding our advanced classes:
610-691-6055 or email at [email protected].

1751 Smithy

The Smithy and the Blacksmith Program are being funded in whole or in part with funding received through the County of Northampton's Hotel Tax Program.

Blacksmithing 101 Class Levels

Blacksmithing 101 (Beginner)

During the course of our Blacksmithing 101 class, students will make a simple iron hook and a cheese knife, learn how to use the bellows, learn how to keep the forge fire appropriately hot, and enjoy introductory hands-on blacksmithing techniques.

Blacksmithing 101 Public Classes will be offered every Saturday when the Smithy is open.

Check out the open hours here.

Blacksmithing 201 (Intermediate 1)

Can be scheduled as a follow-up class to build upon the skills learned in Blacksmithing 101

In this class the student uses techniques learned in Blacksmithing 101 to produce a steak flipper or cheese harp. Additionally, students will make a leaf key ring, and learn various techniques that can be used to create the veins in the leaf. Students will also explore some intermediate techniques such as upsetting, fullering, and chisel techniques.

Blacksmithing 201 Public Classes will be offered on the following dates:

Blacksmithing 202 (Intermediate 2)

Students can choose to make their own iron tools and learn to use a blacksmith cone mandrel and other blacksmithing equipment. Students will also explore forge welding by making a simple chain.

Blacksmithing 202 Public Classes will be offered on the following dates:

Advanced Classes

This is a customizable class for students who have taken the beginner and intermediate level classes.

After taking the beginner and intermediate level classes students at the advanced level can consult with the blacksmith in selecting a project that can be completed within the 3-hour class time, such as steel bowls, three-legged fireplace cooking vessels, fireplace pokers, or simple artistic sculpture components such as flowers. Students at the advanced level will explore various twisting techniques to shape iron with different results. Advanced classes can also include riveting and working with copper.

Custom Group Classes

Looking for a unique group activity? Private classes for a group of 5-8 students can also be scheduled at our 1750 Smithy. Your group will be able to learn the basics of blacksmithing with two of our skilled blacksmiths in a 3-hour session. If you are interested in scheduling a custom class for your group please contact Keith Sten at [email protected]

Blacksmithing 101 Class Pricing

Regular Class: 3-hour classes can accommodate up to 4 students.  Classes are typically scheduled to start at 9 am on days when the Smithy has open hours.

For ages 14 and up.
View our Smithy site hours.

Blacksmith Apprentice Bundle: Expand your blacksmithing skills even further with this 3-class package that includes our introductory blacksmithing 101 class and both intermediate level classes. Students save $15 when purchasing this bundle rather than purchasing classes individually. Classes can be scheduled in advance by contacting Keith Sten at [email protected]

*Blacksmith Apprentice bundle classes can be scheduled on public class dates. If you are looking to schedule these three classes as private class dates please contact Keith Sten to learn more about bundle pricing.

For ages 14 and up.
View our Smithy site hours.

Private Class: You can customize the start time of your 3-hour class if you are scheduling a private class (either individually or as a group of up to 4).  Private classes can be scheduled on days when the Smithy does not have scheduled open hours as long as a Blacksmith is available.

For ages 14 and up.
View our Smithy site hours.

Gift Certificate Info: If you are interested in purchasing a blacksmithing experience as a gift, please include the name of the recipient in your blacksmithing inquiry. Gift certificates can be purchased before a class date is chosen, but the recipient must schedule their class date by calling our Visitor Center at 1-800-360-TOUR when they are ready to redeem the class. Classes will be scheduled when CDC guidelines permit.

*Students cannot drop in on a public class date. Students must call the Visitor Center or contact Keith Sten to be officially scheduled for that class date

For ages 14 and up.
View our Smithy site hours.

Fill out the form below to enroll in the colonial experience of a lifetime!

Blacksmithing 101 Testimonials

"Learning historic manufacturing techniques was an amazing experience. I would encourage anyone with any interest in history, manufacturing, or engineering/design to take this class." -Zachary Galuppi

"When I saw the little square advertisement in Historic Bethlehem for Blacksmithing 101 lessons I had no idea it would become as engrossing a hobby as I now hold it to be. You get 1-on-1 time with an experienced smithy and private access to a historic forge and workshop, as well as all the materials you could possibly need for the lesson. You won't need to pay a dime more for an exciting afternoon or morning banging hot metal against an anvil in the ways the Founding Fathers did nearly 300 years ago! I couldn't recommend it highly enough. All of the staff is friendly and whatever you imagine the experience will be, the actual thing is even better. I forged a Christmas gift for my mother during my 3rd visit! There is a veritable ocean of knowledge and skill right here in Historic Bethlehem and this is a great opportunity to sample the flavor of it." -Anthony Murphy

"The blacksmithing course exceeded my expectation.  I thought that at the most I might be making an S hook, but as it turned out I was taught how to make two, more complicated objects.  I was simply delighted with all that I had learned in such a short time.  The 3 hours were over before I knew it. Ed Land is an amazing professional, with a great knowledge of the blacksmithing skills, a friendly and effective knack for working with novices, and a rich career, filled with many amazing experiences.  I very much enjoyed listening and learning."  -Tom Bross

Blacksmithing 101 Gallery

Pennsylvania Artist-Blacksmiths' Association Meeting at our Blacksmith Shop

Register for Blacksmithing 101

Due to the pandemic we are not able to schedule classes classes at this time. Please check back.



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