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Jorg Jemelka founded The Briar Workshop in Vermont along with Elliott Nachwalter in 1976, and apparently stayed until 1980. Jorg's main interest was in pipe making machinery and equipment, with a view to eventual automation.

While in Vermont, the Briar Workshop acquired turn of the century pipemaking equipment as part of a collaborative arrangement with Ehrlich's of Boston. Jemelka modified this machinery to enable the production of true copies of handmade pipes. This methodology distinguishes Briar Workshop Florida from Briar Workshop Vermont. Nachwalter and Brad Pohlmann continued in providing designs for batch production as well as hand-made 'one-offs' for sale.

To further his ambition for 'lights-out' automation of pipe production, Jemelka went on (1980-1983) to earn a Master's degree in computer science at the university of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and has continued devoting his efforts to manufacturing automation, albeit in disk-drive and other high-tech industries.