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Image courtesy of Houston Cofield

The Metal Museum is a great place to see artists in action! In addition to demonstrations and classes, our artists create commissioned projects of all types and size from fireplace screens to chandeliers, iron railings, and gates. 



Open to the public since 1985, the Blacksmith Shop, also known as the Smithy, offers visitors the opportunity to see blacksmiths at work. The Smithy hosts special workshops by visiting artists, as well as regularly scheduled classes taught by resident artists. The Museum staff also does special projects for public and private clients. Commissions have included a weathervane for the Memphis Zoo, a sterling silver coffee and tea service for the trident nuclear submarine the U.S.S. Tennessee, a suit of Etruscan armor and weapons for the Memphis Wonders International Cultural Series, and trophies for the Memphis in May International Barbecue Cooking Contest. The Smithy was expanded in 1993, with funding from Schering-Plough and major tool and equipment donations from S. Fargotstein and Sons, to include a state of the art metals repairs and restoration facility. Repairs and restoration projects have included the gates at Graceland, the statue of Elvis Presley now housed in the Memphis Visitors Center, cemetery gates for the City of Pontiac, Illinois, and bronze leaves for the Oklahoma State Capitol. 

Two blacksmiths work on a complex sculpture.
Molten hot aluminum is poured into a mold.


A blacksmith shows a student where to strike a heated steel bar.

Whether you've taken a class with us before, have your own shop or just want to try something new, you'll find we've designed a class (or two) just for you! Sign up for a class at the Metal Museum today.



Stanley Lawler, president of Birmingham, Alabama-based Lawler Machine and Foundry, provided the funding for the foundry located west of the Smithy. The foundry houses melt furnaces, a kiln and molding equipment for green sand casting. Lawler Machine and Foundry was founded in 1933 in Birmingham, and remains a leading supplier of both cast and forged iron components to the ornamental iron industry. Lawler Machine and Foundry also cast the railings for the Metal Museum's Riverbluff Pavilion, a site of many weddings and concert performances on the Mississippi River bluff.


A blacksmithing apprentice grinds away imperfections on a commissioned piece.

When you hire an artist at the Metal Museum, you are investing in your future, while supporting the Museum’s programs and helping train the next generation of master metalsmiths. 

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