Thomas L. Holtkamp 1934-2012 Thomas Holtkamp’s career was in teaching and social service. Over the years, he taught English, and Music in Minnesota and Illinois. He taught the emotionally disturbed in Illinois and Wisconsin. Thomas was also a former aquatics instructor. He liked to write but was never published. Thomas had an unfinished caning project. When he finally got tired of looking at it he checked a book out of the library and taught himself to weave seats, that was over fifty years ago. Weaving and caning quickly became one of his hobbies. After retirement seat weaving became a new career. For a while Thomas did seat repair, and weaving in a small shop he maintained in his home. He taught his skill in twenty different states; coast to coast from Delaware to California. Thomas loved teaching, from small groups on his front porch to large conventions. He was always working on new designs, using different materials and techniques. Thomas was a founding member of the Seat weavers Guild, a national organization. He also served as a board member. Thomas was married to Sarah; they had one son and two grandchildren. He was a kind and patient man and teacher. Thomas enjoyed traveling and sightseeing, but most of all he enjoyed meeting and working with kind, interesting and friendly students. He will be fondly remembered and greatly missed by all who knew him. Some comments from his friends: “His witty charm, sense of humor, and teaching talents are irreplaceable and will be greatly missed. “ D.J. “He was so kind and patient to a new weaver and so gracious in sharing his knowledge.” S.R. “I will always treasure the classes I had and the stools I made with him.” B.S. “Because of his teaching, caning and seat weaving, he will continue to be alive and growing.” B.S.
In Thomas’ memory the Kentucky Basket Association has decided to give a Memorial Scholarship in his honor. This scholarship will be given each year to a first time attendee to the KBA annual convention. It will be good for a free registration to the next year’s convention.
2013 Winner Wilda Walker from Franklin N.C 2012 Winner Carol Morrison of Nova Scotia