Life In Ann Arbor:
Not Quite Lost Art
Blacksmith Herman Weiss of 618 Packard St., who will be 75 years old Tuesday, works busily at his forge in Economy Baler Co., where he forges parts for baling machines. Weiss has spent almost 62 years at blacksmithing, starting at the trade when he was still a young boy on his father’s farm near Oshkosh, Wis.
Local Blacksmith One Of Oldest Left In Trade
On Tuesday, Herman G. Weiss of 618 Packard St. can rightly consider himself one of the oldest living exponents of the ancient and all but extinct art of blacksmithing.
For on that day Weiss will be 75 years old, with a record of almost 62 years of continuous smithing behind him.
At 75, Weiss will still be going strong with hammer and forge at Economy Baler Co., where he has been the firm's blacksmith for the past half-dozen years. He forges parts for baling machines for the company.
Weiss got an early start in blacksmithing, when he was still a boy on his father’s farm near Oshkosh, Wis.
“I learned blacksmithing in town and worked nights on the farm,” he said. One of his proudest recollections is that when he was still a young boy he was allowed to shoe Dan Patch, the legendary harness racing horse.
Since then, Weiss has worked as a blacksmith for railroads, factories, and himself.
"But the last time I shod a horse was three years ago, at a stable near here,” he said. He saved the shoes he took off the horse and hung them on the wall near his forge at Economy Baler.
"I like to look at them,” he said. “Reminds me of the old days.”