Artisans worked at home or in small stores and used their tools to make textiles, shoes and other products. The blacksmith was an essential merchant and craftsman in a colonial city. It manufactured indispensable items such as horseshoes, pots, pans and nails. Blacksmiths (sometimes called ferreros) manufactured numerous products for farmers, such as axes, ploughs, cowbells and hoes.
They also manufactured hammers, candle holders, tools, files, locks, chimney racks and anvils. Most of the blacksmith's work was done in his personal forge, in which scalded iron bars were hammered with heavy sleds to give various shapes to the iron. Artisans developed a natural tendency to greater independence, more so than the landowning nobility and farmers. The typical craftsman had his own tools and worked in a small workshop, often his home, with the help of family members and young officers and apprentices who learned the trade.
How important this growing class of artisans was in defining colonial resistance to England's laws. The city was also home to a large population of furniture makers, jewelers and silversmiths who provided services to the wealthiest citizens, and hundreds of lower-class artisans, such as weavers, blacksmiths, coaters and construction workers. Born in New York City in 1723, Myer Myers, a Jewish silversmith of Dutch descent, became one of the city's most outstanding artisans.