Historical type setting examples and the Type Archive

I have recently been working on designs for a memorial to a compositor. For those of you that don’t know, a compositor was a person who arranged movable type for printing lettering. The family emailed me these wonderful membership cards of his. I thought they may be of interest. They reflect the era somewhat, and I think they’re great.

Talking of typesetting, a few months ago I visited The Type Archive in Stockwell, London, and it was a fascinating trip. There was an amazing collection of old typesetting machinery and associated equipment. Their website is great too: “The Type Archive holds the National Typefounding Collection, purchased with grants from the National Heritage Memorial Fund; broadly comprising; 1. the typefounding materials of the Sheffield typefounders, Stephenson Blake, a collection dating from 16th century London typefounders to their 20th century counterparts; 2. the hot-metal archive and plant of the Monotype Corporation, operating from Salfords in Surrey from 1897, and in London’s Lambeth from 1992 to date; and 3. the Woodletter pattern collection and plant of Robert DeLittle in York from 1888, and in Lambeth from 1996″.

Here are a few random pictures I took there:

One Reply to “Historical type setting examples and the Type Archive”

  1. Hello Teucer

    Thank you for a fascinating blog about the compositor and the Type Archive (the latter I know well).

    In future, could you address your blog to director@letteringartstrust.org.uk – that way every current and future director will be able to enjoy it.

    Kind regards

    Karoline

    PS Do let us know when you may be able to come to Snape to collect the artwork you created for the Chelsea Physic Garden which I am terrified I will fall over! It is safely located beside my desk for the timebeing.

    Like

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