Meet Ray Richard! Details on new work below this biographical sketch!
After one of his recent buying trips, we received this note from Doug "NobleCaptain" McGowan:
"Raymond Richard lives in Gresham, a short holler down the road from Portland, Oregon. He has been making knives for about 8 years now. He does all his own work, including forging blades, tempering, making mosaic pins, filework, great custom handles, etc.He comes from a well-known cutlery family. Among his ancestors are Stephen Richard and Joseph Richard, who from 1861 through 1928 owned Richard Cutlery in Southbridge, Massachusetts. Their most distinctive mark was a rooster. I got to see one of the original 'JA Richard' factory stamps when I visited Ray’s shop. See page 146 of 'New England Cutlery' by Phil Pankiewicz for more on the family business. So the connection to vintage knives continues!
Ray puts great artistry AND devotion to meticulous detail into his work. He is very versatile, prefers forging to stock removal (although he does both extremely well) and creates a beautiful knife! One specialty of Ray’s shop is hand-forged tomahawks. He makes several configurations of ‘hawks, including ones with axe head and hammer head, double axe heads, and the more traditional axe head with spike. The balance and feel of these tomahawks are magnificent.
Ray is a carpenter by trade, and had a quad bypass about two years ago. He is now hammering away on metal like a much younger man. I was amazed at his upper body strength. He makes those hammers look like they are a lot lighter than they are. It's like magic what he can do with a hammer and a piece of hot steel."