Chadds Ford Historical Society

Revisiting History

Chadds Ford Days Spotlight: The Jersey Jerry Broomsquire

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One of the best parts of Chadds Ford Days is all the unique crafters that attend, each bringing an artistic and distinctive element to the festival.  Below you will find an interview with one of our longstanding crafters, Sam Moyer, who brings skill, art, and history together in broom making.  

Tell us a bit about yourself, where did you grow up, etc.?
I grew up on a farm near Hershey, PA.  I attended Hershey High School in the Agriculture Program, then Hershey Jr. College.  I received my BS in agriculture from Penn State, my MS in poultry genetics from the University of New Hampshire, and then my Ph.D. in genetics from the University of Minnesota.  I taught genetics at Northeastern University in Boston, and I retired from teaching biology and genetics at Burlington County College, Pemberton NJ.

How many years have you attended Chadds Ford Days?
I have attended Chadds Ford Days for 25+ years, and I have been making brooms for 35 years.

What is your craft and how did you get started in it?
My craft is broom making. I was interested in the genetics of the plant, which is a type of sorghum, and so I developed a multicolored, machine harvestable broomcorn, again a type of sorghum from 1983 to 2006.

Do you use any local goods in your craft?
I plant 1.5 acres broomcorn on a preserved farm, in Burlington County, NJ, and use this to make my craft.  I also make the broom handles from scrap/reclaimed wood.

What is it you want people to remember about your craft/how do you seek to inspire people?
I am proud to craft art that you can use and I hope to make sweeping a pleasure.

How do you seek to impact the community with your business? 
I seek to reduce plastic use and also to reduce the use of foreign imports.

What in particular can we look forward to seeing at your booth this Chadds Ford Days? 
woven topsdemo with winder.  wrought iron

Photos courtesy of Dr. Sam Moyer, Ph. D.

Check out the links below to learn more: http://articles.philly.com/2003-11-16/news/25463427_1_broom-berea-college-sorghum www.broomcrafters.com

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