IN PREPARING this little volume on archery the writer cannot claim more than ordinary ability in the use of the bow. His fundamental interest has been in education where handicraft skill plays a part; and certainly the making of good bows and arrows and their use tends to promote manual skill of a high order. As his own interest in the making of archery tackle developed he naturally began to consider its value, not only as a project in schools where industrial or manual arts are taught, but also in the home shop where dad and his boy spend welcome hours solving handicraft problems of absorbing interest.
We hear much these days about the shorter working hours and the longer periods of leisure. Partly as a result of this development, the home shop has become quite popular and many an amateur craftsman has now sufficient skill to make a real bow and arrows, provided only that thought, patience, and care are given to the project in abundance. Likewise, many boys, both old and young, are keen to make bows and arrows for themselves as soon as they believe the work involved is within their skill. The following pages are written for the purpose of encouraging this belief and helping to bring it to fruition.
Be it understood that the purpose of this treatise goes beyond the interest of a growing boy, great though that may be. It is intended no less for the boy's father and for business and professional men. In fact, it is intended for everyone who would have the delight of using bow and tackle of his own make. Nor does this exclude women, for we have personal knowledge of two, each of whom has made a good bow recently. Certainly women are taking up archery to about the same extent as, if not more than, men. Some of them, no doubt, would find interest in making bows for themselves. It is no uncommon sight these days to see women skilfully using woodworking tools.
The writer wishes to express his appreciation for the helpful interest and valuable suggestions of his former col league, Professor William L. Hunter, who also generously permitted the use of photographs showing equipment of his own design. Nor can the writer refrain from expressing his gratitude to the late William J. Peck, recently president of the Midwest Archery Association, who read the manuscript and offered valuable criticisms and suggestions.
Sincere thanks are also due my young friend, William R. Ash, Eagle Scout of Ames, Iowa, who posed for the illustrative pictures of Chapter VII on "Shooting and Sports."