Well it seems that donors do make a difference for Colonial Williamsburg and the famous Colonial Williamsburg Brickyard. Thanks to donations the Brickyard will be moving to a much more scenic spot behind the Carpenter’s Yard located on the corner of Botetourt and Nicholson Street.
Now the brickmakers can make their bricks on a clean, level ground with a glimpse of natural sunlight. No only is it a win for the brickmakers, it is a win for guests as the new location is easier to find. Additionally, delivery drivers to find the new location much easier to drop of the clay and sand needed for bricks.
The colonial brick-making process is simple, interpreters and Colonial Williamsburg guests stomp the wet clay to mix it while they remove any pieces of hardened rock. The mixed clay is rolled into clumps, thrown into molds, removed and dried for days on a drying table. The bricks are stacked inside small buildings awaiting their turn inside an on-site kiln also known as a clampe. For every 1,000 bricks made, a huge stack of wood almost ten feet tall is needed.
The annual kiln firing is a long tradition loved by tourists and locals. Unfortunately, as the work proceeds the brickmakers will be busy on rebuilding the kiln and out buildings and there won’t be a firing for the 2021 summer but will return to all it’s glory next year.