Little John Bury -- A Tribute to His Legacy

Click the link below to visit the shop's website.
Click the link below to visit the shop's website. | Source
Little John Bury was an avid enthusiast of pirates.
Little John Bury was an avid enthusiast of pirates.
John receiving his black belt in karate.
John receiving his black belt in karate.
Little John's Tattoo, on the corner of Aycock and Lee streets in Greensboro, NC.
Little John's Tattoo, on the corner of Aycock and Lee streets in Greensboro, NC.

In NC, No One Has Done More for the Art and Business of Tattooing Than Little John

Tattooing, as an art and a business in North Carolina, would not be as advanced as it is today without the dedication and work of "Little John" Bury. John was the original owner of Carolina Tattoo, the first high quality tattoo shop in Greensboro, NC. As a tattoo artist and a business man, John lobbied state and county authorities to created laws and standardized regulations for tattooing that would protect both the customers and the artists involved in this art form.

Little John's efforts created a cleaner, safer environment for exploring the art of tattooing in the Triad area, and throughout the state. Eventually, John left behind Carolina Tattoo and opened Little John's Tattoo. For almost twenty years, Little John's has been my choice for the best place in Greensboro to get tattooed or pierced. Today, tattoo parlors all over North Carolina are clean and safe places that adhere to standardized methods of sterilization and tattoo application.

Twenty years ago, even a customer getting their first tattoo could readily see that John and his staff were leading the business in cleanliness and procedures. I visited tattoo shops all over the NC Triad area in 1993 when I was looking for my first tattoo. John and his artists were the only ones bagging the tattoo machines, and even the electrical cords, to prevent any chance of cross contamination between customers or artists.

John Bury's dedication to raising the art of tattooing has left a lasting impact on the business that is still noticeable throughout the state. Although John's life was tragically cut short in 2008, his legacy lives on at his tattoo shop and in the many lives that he has impacted. The extensive collection of tattoo art on his body, and his occasionally gruff demeanor, could give a person the idea that John was an unapproachable character. In fact, John was well know among his peers and the community for his kindness and generosity. He often gave people in need a meal, a place to stay, or a spot at his dinner table during a holiday.

John may be gone, but his ship, Little John's Tattoo sails on. His family and friends continue his legacy and pay tribute to the man that he was. John was a great enthusiast of all aspects of body art, a martial artist, and a self styled pirate. He is well remembered by the tattoo community of North Carolina and beyond.

Source

Right: John's sister, Jami Forsch, remembers him with this tattoo. One of John's great loves was pirate culture. He is depicted with a pirate hat and eye patch.

John Bury's Dragon Backpiece

Right: Little John's dragon back-piece would later be recreated as a tribute from a friend.


Below: John's long time friend, Jesse "Mule" Hembree, had his back tattooed with a recreation of Little John's dragon backpiece, after John's untimely death in 2008.


"John was cremated, so his artwork isn't around anymore. I had his back-piece recreated so that this part of him continues on."

Jesse Mule's Backpiece

Source
A sculpted bust of John hangs above the door at Little John's Tattoo.
A sculpted bust of John hangs above the door at Little John's Tattoo.

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