Frye's Measure Mill

Shaker Boxes



Striving for the "urge for perfection", Frye's Measure Mill follows documented Shaker traditions as outlined by historians Edward and Faith Andrews to painstakingly create Shaker boxes with native maple, hand bent around wooden shaping molds, and fastened with copper tacks.

While in a reflective mood, Harland once commented that in his nearly fifty years of work at the Mill, two significant events stood out in his mind. The first was when the Smithsonian Institution invited him to demonstrate Colonial box making at the Montreal Expo, "Man and His World", and the second; the day that Shaker Eldress Bertha stopped by.

The last Shaker oval box maker was Delmer Wilson (1873-1961) of the Sabbathday Lake Community. Eldress Bertha learned from the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen, that Harland Savage, a League member, was continuing the tradition of Colonial box making at Frye's Measure Mill.

In the late 1960's, Eldress Bertha approached Harland Savage to help her preserve the Shakers' disappearing craft of box making. During her visit to the Mill, she suggested a cooperative effort that would result in Shaker boxes once again being available at the Canterbury Museum Shop. She supported and encouraged the Savages' endeavors by allowing them access to the Canterbury collections. Thus, the start of our Shaker line!