Hands Employed Aright
The Furniture Making of Jonathan Fisher (1768-1847)
By Joshua A. Klein
You can download an excerpt via this link.
Jonathan Fisher (1768-1847) was the first settled minister of the frontier
town of Blue Hill, Maine. Harvard-educated and handy with an axe, Fisher
spent his adult life building furniture for his community. Fortunately for
us, Fisher recorded every aspect of his life as a woodworker and minister
on the frontier.
In this book, author Joshua A. Klein, the founder of Mortise & Tenon Magazine, examines what might be the most complete record of the life of an early 19th-century American craftsman. Using Fisher’s papers, his tools and the surviving furniture, Klein paints a picture of a man of remarkable mechanical genius, seemingly boundless energy and the deepest devotion. It is a portrait that is at times both familiar and completely alien to a modern reader – and one that will likely change your view of furniture making in the early days of the United States.
“Hands Employed Aright” is printed in the United States. Its 288 pages are in full color and on heavy coated paper. The pages are sewn for durability, hardbound and covered in a full-color dust jacket.
About the Author
Joshua Klein was born in Appleton, Wisconsin.
“I was always the art kid,” he says.
He wasn’t much into sports and instead spent his spare time painting, drawing and playing music. He was content with Bs, spending less time on achieving perfect test scores and more time on creating things of beauty. In high school he attended a charter school with a focus on art. Half of his day was spent taking art classes along with dance, music and theater.
“That really was pretty formative for me,” he says. “It legitimized my interests.”
Although his parents were supportive, Joshua said many of his peers were more interested in sports – that is, until he was surrounded by likeminded peers at the charter school. That experience set up his life trajectory in a way, which has been, essentially, exploring different forms of art.
Read more about Joshua Klein in this full profile.