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Jim Kelso

Louis Mills(Yasutomo) - Rest In Peace

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I just heard this morning that Louis Mills passed quietly in his sleep early this morning. Working with Louis was a major milestone in my career, and I am honored to have done so. I greatly admired his dedication to Japanese swordsmithing. When we met he was one of two smiths that I know of in this country taking up that extremely demanding craft. He had studied in workshops with the Yoshihara brothers. As my work expanded to other types of work we fell somewhat out of touch, but had made contact in the last few years. I'm very glad we had the opportunity to do some catching up.

My sympathies go to his wife Marge.

Edited by Jim Kelso
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I hate to hear that, Jim.  :(  I only met him once, right when I was getting started.  At the time I didn't know how important that was.  It wasn't until a few years later when I heard Don Fogg speaking in awe of Louis that I realized how lucky I was to have met him.

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Thanks Alan. I think it's easy these days, with so much information available, to perhaps not appreciate how difficult it was back when to figure stuff out to a point where you can make progress. Louis's accomplishments in that context is really impressive.

Here is an o-tanto we made with a really lovely blade by him:

(photo credit Francesco Pachi) Thanks to Dan Favano for the photo use

 

Dan Favano 05.jpeg

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Thanks for that Tony. Dave has a lot of good material on Louie.

Edited by Jim Kelso

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A photo of Louie and me 1985, with wakizashi we made, on our way to the Higgins Armory.

 

IMG_3222PSEweb.jpeg

Edited by Jim Kelso

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