Whittler & Woodworker, Oak Ridge
Tennessee Folklife Heritage Award (2015)
A self-identified “itinerant whittler,” folk craftsman Bill Henry has mastered over 200 forms and carved an estimated 20,000 pieces, many of which are on display in private and public collections, including the Smithsonian. His wood carvings include miniature tools, birdhouses, working wooden padlocks and more of what he describes as “Miniature Americana.” He demonstrated his whittling at the Smithsonian Folklife Festive during America’s Bicentennial in 1976 and again in 1983. Henry became a member of the Southern Highland Arts Guild in 1965 and a lifetime member in 1991. His service to the folk arts includes his charter membership of the Foothills Craft Guild, an organization for which he also served as the first president. He has won numerous awards and honors, including The Southern Arts Craft Guild’s Heritage Preservation Award in 2012.