Dan Hrinko, a box-maker, has been involved in historical re-enacting for the past 30 years. He began to study and build various items to accurately equip his camp for various events. His work drew the attention of other re-enactors who sought similar pieces for themselves and their homes. He travels to several re-enactments each year and makes his bentwood boxes entirely by hand on site using period tools and techniques.
Hrinko also works part-time in his shop to escape from his career as a court psychologist. He likes to connect with the skilled artisans of our past who produced the works that we revere. He continues to study original pieces in various museum collections and is always looking for different and interesting items to construct that
demand new and better skills.
His bentwood boxes include the Shaker-style ovals from the 19th Century as well as oval and round boxes with simpler joints to reflect the 18th Century. His joined boxes include writing slopes in the English style, spice boxes in the northern Virginia style, copies of Thomas Jefferson’s personal writing box, Jefferson’s revolving bookstand, and traveling liquor cellarets.
Each hand-built box—whether an exact reproduction or a representative example based on an original museum piece—is suitable for historic homes, museums, and other settings where historical accuracy is critical. His goal is to produce something that will look like it has always been in the most historic of homes.
Artisans wishing to participate in the 2021 Directory of Traditional American Crafts™ may download applications by clicking here. Because of the uncertainty of mail delivery caused by the Pandemic, we have extended the deadline for entries. We will accept entries postmarked by February 15, 2021. Those selected will be notified after judging in April, 2021. The 2021 Directory of Traditional American Crafts™ will appear in the August 2021 issue of Early American Life.
1,991 days until America's Sestercentennial
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