James H. Margroom - artisan from Pennsylvania (d.7/8/2001).
CUSTOM-MADE BRIARWOOD PIPES
Today, a visit to a pipemaker's shop could be a disappointing experience. The traditional hand-carving one would expect to see while a block of briarwood is transformed into a beautiful pipe is mostly a thing of the past. However, in my Hanover, Pennsylvania, workshop, I have tried to remain true to tradition for more than 30 years. I have gained a solid reputation for my carving of unique, often whimsical and, sometimes, exotic pipes all of which bear my trademark, "Mr. Groum". Some samples of my work are pictured on this page and another reached through the link below.
My carvings have won recognition from Pipe Collectors International, including an award for my apple-shaped pipes one of which is shown below. Now that I'm 78, I work only when I feel inspired and although some of my creations might not appeal to some traditionalists or purists, all of my pipes are made from blocks of fine imported briar and are designed to be smoked. I sell my pipes at leading craft shows in Pennsylvania and Maryland and from my shop to pipe enthusiasts around the world. My work generally retails for $60 to $100 for simple carvings; more exotic pieces are priced from $150.