I have been getting a ton of restoration projects lately. Someone actually sent in a 60+ year old stick into the WoodLacrosseSticks.com wood shop. To my surprise, the package with nothing but a letter and a check.
[As a general rule, don’t send your irreplaceable heirlooms in an unmarked box to strangers!]
Seeing so many old crosses made me want to revisit more from the Alf Jacques collection that was on display at this year’s convention.
The Alf Jacques Traveling Collection
I personally believe that the small odds and ends that are displayed at Alf’s booth do more to expand the understanding of the game than the sticks. It shows how much more there is to learn.
Also, it is amazing to watch someone see a traditional ball for the first time. I’ll make sure to finish showing you the rest of the notable crosses that were at the show in a later post.
For now let’s take some broad strokes.
The sticks on display vary from great lakes sticks to Alf’s full bends. (Full bend = no gut sidewall, but instead the wood wraps around to connect back to the shaft.)
Full bends are the pinnacle of wooden stick making. Of course there are multiple sitting on his table.
Stick ball games like that of the Cherokee, and dozens of Native tribes, are often overlooked when one considers our game’s heritage.
There are always multiple sticks on display. The conversation often boils down to a confused person asking “what are these little things.”
As I was putting this post together, I started thinking. No other stick maker can engrave a simple shape into their stick, and have the world know who it’s creator was. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, look closer.
I have to burn my last name into anything I make.
He truly is the greatest.