UA Hope-Texarkana James Black School of Bladesmithing and Historic Trades Offering Free Bladesmithing Class for Veterans


The University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana James Black School of Bladesmithing and Historic Trades is offering a special “thank you for your service” bladesmithing course for veterans on November 6-10 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The veterans-only class is free and limited to eight participants. The course will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. “We are thankful for the sacrifices of our veterans, and this is just one small way we can give back,” said Jennifer Teresa, UAHT Dean of Technical Programs and Bladesmithing Director.

Students in the course will forge, grind, heat treat, and temper a blade. They will also assemble a Bowie knife kit to learn the various aspects of finishing a knife.

The instructor for the course is James R. Cook, of Nashville, Arkansas. Cook is a member of the Arkansas Knife Makers Association, the American Blade Smith Society and is an Arkansas Living Treasure. He received a Master Smith rating with the ABS in 1991. His work has been featured in most knife-related publications in the U.S. and abroad. Cook served as an official for the Master Smith and Journeyman Smith Judging Committees with the American Bladesmith Society and helped create and facilitate the BLADE Show World Championship Cutting Competition. He has won multiple awards, including the 2011 Arkansas Knifemakers Association Show Best of Show, Best Damascus, and Best Giraffe Bone Handle, the 2010 Arkansas Knifemakers Association show Best Art Knife, and the 2009 American Bladesmith Society’s Chairman’s Award for Outstanding Service in Bladesmithing.

Register for the class today at or call 870-722-8109 for more information.

The James Black School of Bladesmithing and Historic Trades is located at 601 Lawrence St, Washington, AR 71862. For more information, visit

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