The Krackow Company

Background, About Us

Why the Krackow Company?

Since the ice melted and the first wild goose flew, the arrow in flight has stirred the hearts of people around the world.

The Krackow Company is dedicated to promoting the ancient and world-wide art of archery.

The connection with Krackow reaches back to 1241 and far beyond...

Today, in Krackow, a beautiful trumpet melody announces each new hour from high in the tower of Saint Mary's Cathedral. The call ends abruptly in the middle of a phrase, just as it did in 1241 when the arrow of an invading Mongol archer pierced the heart of the trumpeter. The name Krackow points to a celebrated medieval city of art and learning. Krackow also draws our thoughts out to the vast steppes which the Mongol archer crossed, and the paths of early archers reaching across continents and oceans. The name Krackow Company celebrates the constructive dynamics of contemporary traditional archery as well as its roots which reach across time and space.

For a more complete account of the legend, and the tone of 13th-century Krackow, see The Trumpeter of Krackow by Eric Kelly.

The Krackow Philosophy

Traditional archery is an art, a philosophy, and even a way of life. The Japanese word for archery (Kyudo) is literally the way of the bow. Archery includes recreation and hunting and more. Archery is an ancient art of self-development that embraces discipline, patience, fitness, beauty, and above all an appreciation of natural history and a respect for the human race. Archery is one avenue of developing the self in relationship to others, in body, mind, and spirit.

The creativity, adaptability, and intelligence of the peoples of the world are stamped upon their archery artifacts. The longbow with a nearly round cross section (and often somewhat flattened back) appears in the hands of very early archers around the world -- the Nubians in Africa, the Anglo-Saxons, the Pueblo and Pima Native North Americans, and many South Americans. Beyond the self longbow, the rich variations in archery throughout the world attest to the sophistication of the human mind, and to the verve of the human spirit.

The twentieth-century rediscovery of primitive archery has the potential to bring peoples of the world together and to restore a sense of place within nature. The primitive archer is dependent upon trees for wood; stone for points; animals for horn, glue, sinew, skins, and feathers; and soil, air, and water -- in short the community of life and land.

While some early humans saw an ethical community within nature, many today struggle to re-capture this view. Aldo Leopold restores this wisdom as artfully as any modern in his ecological essays in the Sand County Almanac. Similar attitudes are expressed by Jim Posewitz in Beyond Fair Chase an by Jim Hamm in Ishi and Elvis.

The Krackow Company follows a two-pronged vision. One: that seasoned traditional archers may be encouraged to explore new dimensions of their art. And two: that non-archers (grandparents, parents, singles, and children) can find here an attractive invitation to a road leading to a higher quality of life.

The intent of this website is to help fan the excitement of the long-lived world-wide art of archery today.

David and Phyllis Gray, The Krackow Company, LLC.