Carpentry is one of the world's oldest lines of work; it probably arose at about the same time as farming. That is, when we were hunter-gatherers, we slept in caves or out in the open. But around the time that we started to take control of our food supply, humans also got more ambitious about our shelters, making them rather than just finding them. An obvious building material for this was tree branches and fallen logs, which could be cut to size with sharp tools ... and so, a profession was born.
Fast-forward about 100,000 years, and carpentry is still a vital line of work. In modern times, some carpenters have branched out into specialized fields, like cabinetmaking, preservation carpentry and "green" or eco-friendly carpentry. This means they can always find work, even in the age of pre-fabricated homes and new materials, like steel (which is common in multi-story urban buildings). Make no mistake, you'll still see a lot of wood-frame homes going up -- timber isn't going anywhere, and neither is carpentry.
How much do you know about this respected profession? Do you know, for example, what it means when a home is "stick built"? (Doesn't sound very durable!) Or where in a new building you'd find "trusses"? Test your knowledge of the carpentry trade now, with our quiz!