According to an article in The Pantagraph of July 17, 1942, John and William McEwen established their blacksmith shop in Chenoa on February 29, 1896. It operated on the same corner for nearly 47 years. The unique service in the first shop was that they made their own horseshoes which their customers preferred. Through the years they kept up with the technology of the day - from old time bellows to the latest in electric blowers and implements.   

This collection consists of five newspaper articles about the Scottish-born McEwen brothers the blacksmith shop’s inception and success, plus the sudden and untimely death of John’s son. Included are obits for William’s wife, William, and John. The eight business ledgers cover 1896 through 1899, then 1902 and 1905.