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Job: Junior Apprentice Weaver

  • Colonial Williamsburg 101 S Henry St Williamsburg, VA, 23185 United States (map)

From Colonial Williamsburg

Job Description:

The Junior Apprentice is a High School aged student working in a Trades Shop for school credit.  While in the shop, they carry on the typical work of an apprentice in an eighteenth century workshop, demonstrating common work and learning process for teenage children of the time period.  The work is done as a public program and includes responsibility for verbal interpretation.


Under the guidance of journeymen in the workshop, a Junior Apprentice will learn fundamental skills of working with various fibers for spinning, equipment for making fabric, and dyes for coloring fabric and yarn.,    Skills to attain include starting a fire for dye applications, mixing and preparing dyes and dye aids; learn to manipulate fibers to create yarn on two types of spinning wheels, build fabric on a loom using equipment to warp, wind bobbins, troubleshoot and maintain equipment and tools of the trade.   Learning the names and uses of the various tools used in the shop. The junior apprentice within the first year should be able to make consistent yarn suitable for knitting or weaving.  Additionally the Jr. Apprentice will have the opportunity to weave various structures and assist in the dye process. The junior apprentice will be taught fundamental interpretive information and techniques and will be able interpret the history of the weaving, dyeing and spinning trade as it relates to the local and global contribution on the eve of the Revolution.. The junior apprentice within the first year should have gained the knowledge and confidence to answer guests’ questions and deliver basic information of the trade to engage our guests.

Job Requirements:

  • Presently working as a student at the level of a high school junior.

  • Ability to work with fundamental hand tools

  • Ability to receive instruction from an experienced shop member and to follow those instructions to produce functional yarn and cloth.  

  • Ability to learn safe practice of the trade especially using dye ingredients that may be caustic.  

  • Ability to learn fundamental interpretive content and to make verbal presentations to guests of the shop.

Preferred Qualifications: 

Any previous hand tool experience is a plus


  • Ability to stand for extended periods of time

  • Ability to safely perform repetitive work with traditional hand tools

  • Ability to work under extreme weather conditions with temperatures below freezing and above 100 degrees F

  • Ability to work in dusty and smoky environment

  • Ability to perform physical activities including standing, sitting, kneeling/squatting, lifting up to 75 pounds