John G. Long of Slatington, Lehigh County, Pa., was a skilled basketmaker specializing in split-oak baskets in the Pennsylvania German tradition. Family, friends, collectors, and folklorists lost this premier talent when Long took his own life 21 years ago at the age of 59. Thanks to historian and author Richard Shaner, Long's work has not gone unrecognized in print. Shaner wrote a retrospective honoring Long in the "Historical Review of Berks County," Summer 2003 issue, Vol. 68, No. 3. John Long learned the traditional craft and art of basket-making from his grandmother's brother, Henry Smith, a farmer near Emerald in the Lehigh Valley (north of Bethlehem). During the winters, in order to supplement off-season income outside the growing season, Smith made split oak baskets from local white oak he cut down. At a young age, Long studied under Smith to learn the craft. In the beginning, he made large melon-shaped utilitarian potato baskets. The region has a long agricultural history of growing potatoes. Long had a successful business in this revival art. Most of his work bears his signature written in ink under the rim handle. Both Long and Smith used an "X" style weaving technique at the handle base. Upon securing the circular rim to the handle hoop, an "X" design outside the handle on each side was framed with a crisscross. Extra ribs reinforced the handle juncture. Like many craftspeople working in traditional methods, Long was a fan of the famous "Foxfire" book series founded by Eliot Wigginton. More than a series of books, "Foxfire" was an outgrowth of the back-to-the-land movement, and the series is still considered sacred to anyone interested in Appalachian studies, folklife, and experiential education. Long demonstrated his revivialist craft at the Kutztown Folk Festivals and at fairs held at the Jacob Keim Homestead, among other places. He was fluent in the Pennsylvania German dialect and typically brought his shaving bench to craft fairs to work and demonstrate. His woven handled miniature buttocks baskets, some the size to hold an acorn, are of a mastercraftmanship caliber. It was in the fall of 2002 when Long passed away. A bachelor, Long's estate was settled at a two-day auction held at the Emmaus Fire Company Hall. Well-attended by collectors, about 250 of his baskets were sold. Some brought around $300, the majority around $100 each. The author is always interested in seeing different John Long baskets. He can be reached by emailing email@example.com.