The People:
Clyde P. Miller

Clyde P. Miller, Penland’s first metals instructor, taught jewelry making, metal work, and leather tooling during the summers of 1935, 1936, 1937, and 1938.

Bonnie Willis Ford, in her history of the Penland Weavers, recalled that “through a former Institute student, the interest of Mr. Clyde P. Miller, an expert silver—and goldsmith of Milton, New York, was enlisted and he rendered an inestimable service by organizing and teaching without charge excellent courses in metal work and jewelry making.”

Classes were held in a small room that had been added onto the Pottery, a 19th century log structure which originally had been built as a stable. The classes were very popular and, in 1937, Miller was assisted by Miss Harriet Curry of Bloomington, Indiana and Miss Helen Patton of Franklin, North Carolina. There were 79 students enrolled in his class that summer, 32 of whom were from North Carolina. By 1938 the classes were second only to weaving in popularity.