Lee Sauder

I began blacksmithing in 1973, at the tender age of 12, as an apprentice to Larry Mann, working everyday after school and on Saturdays. After a two year flirtation with college, I continued the traditional journeyman path which included stints working with OK Barnes of Camden Maine, Chris Axelson of Carmel California, and Vaclav Jaros of Prague of (then) Czechoslovakia. I returned home to Lexington, Virginia to take over Woods Creek Forge from Larry Mann in 1984. In January 2009 I moved my forge to my home on the south slope of House Mountain, near Lexington, and renamed the business Germinal Ironworks. I've continued full-time in the blacksmithing business to this day, forging sculpture, custom furniture, and architectural iron. I'm perhaps best known in the blacksmithing community for my research into ancient ironsmelting techniques.

I've been a member of the Artist-Blacksmiths Association of North America since 1974.