The cooperage

Each village with its own vineyard plots also had its own cooper.

This wood craftsman made vats, barrels and buckets. The dried staves of acacia, chestnut and above all oak were split into staves or staves which were then refined to give them their shape. Once soaked, the staves were assembled, heated and provisionally strapped. Once formed, the barrel was wetted and subjected to toasting. Once the bottoms were laid, the final strapping was installed and the bung dug out.

However, an important part of the work of the village coopers consisted of repairing and preparing the barrels in the farms before the harvest.

Illustrations :

– Photograph of a barrel being repaired (photo Pierre Broussouloux ©Musée André Voulgre).

– Photograph of Jean Pichot in his cooper’s workshop in Villamblard in the 1990s.

– ECR IV.5: 15 » video screen with his portrait of the cooper as a craftsman.