Tong Khai Vang is a blacksmith in the LaCrosse Hmong Mutual Assistance Association blacksmith shop which opened in 2001, giving elders a place to practice and teach their skills. It has become an important social hub and a source of local pride. Vang, along with several other master smiths and their apprentices, makes traditional Hmong tools for farming, butchering, and woodworking, as well as specialized tools used in shamanic work.
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