News and Events
Museum of Printing Joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement
And pledges to Preserve Our Font Heritage
The Friends of the Museum of Printing, Haverhill, MA has joined #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. Occurring this year on November 28, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the US) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday to kick off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate in improving local organizations and to give back in impactful ways to the projects and causes they support.
The Museum of Printing possesses rare historic artifacts in need of preservation. This includes the original drawings for the premier font library of the 20th century. The original art for Times Roman, Helvetica, Garamond, and over 3,000 other typefaces are archived at the Museum.
The Museum is building a “Type Vault” to store it all for the ages and better allow access for researchers and others. Our long-term goal is to digitize it as well. Please help save this important resource by donating during this special time . . . and into the future, because that’s where our focus is.
In 2016, the fifth year of #GivingTuesday, millions of people in 98 countries came together to give back and support the causes they believe in. Over $177 million was raised online to benefit a broad range of organizations, and much more was given in volunteer hours, donations, and acts of kindness.
The Friends of the Museum of Printing celebrates its 30th year in 2018. It is located at 15 Thornton Ave., Haverhill, MA.
The Last Letterpress Sale of the Year
Saturday November 18
The fall Letterpress sale has always been popular, but many of you remarked you were busy with family over the Thanksgiving weekend — so we are holding it the week before — November 18th, 10 am to 3 pm.
Everything letterpress — wood and metal fonts, orphans, decorations, cuts, sorts, quoins, keys, sorts, leading, galleys, sticks, type cases, furniture, ink — on sale including:
Gutenberg and the History of the Printed Bible
Saturday, December 2
The Museum of Printing is presenting a unique exhibition and 2 lectures on Gutenberg and the history of the printed Bible Saturday, December 2. Over 10 rare Bibles and replicas of Gutenberg Bible pages will be exhibited, as well as other materials. Three 1-hour presentations will be given at 10 am, Noon and 2 pm.
Gutenberg chose the Bible as the first product of his marvelous invention of movable type in 1455. Martin Luther was the first to translate the Bible into the vernacular, in his case, German.
For two centuries it was punishable by death to print the Bible in any language other than Latin, although the Old Testament existed in Hebrew and Greek. But under King James, a major effort created the translation known to most of the world, and a virtual war broke out over who would print it.
- Thurs. 2
- PINE event
- Sat. 11
- Giant MOP BOOK SALE 10am–3pm
- Sat. 18
- LETTERPRESS SALE 10am–3pm
- Sat. 2
- Gutenberg and the History of the Printed Bible + Exhibit 10am–4pm
- Presentations at 10am, noon and 2pm
“Type Vault” at Museum of Printing archives Linotype type drawings collection — over 400,000 sheets
Use Helvetica or Times Roman? How about Palatino or Optima? They began life as a drawing for every glyph in a font of Linotype hot metal type. Later they were converted to phototypesetting and then to digital type. They also formed the basis for other typesetting machines and fonts from competitors who “borrowed” the designs.
This precious archive has been in the possession of the Museum of Printing in Haverhill, Mass. for over two decades. Researchers from all over the world have analyzed the large drawings for clues in the evolution of fonts by Dwiggins, Zapf, and many others.
The Museum has broken ground for an environmentally secure archive for this priceless colllection. Within the next two months, the collection will be transferred to air-tight containers from their original boxes into a state-of-the-art facility.
The Museum of Printing Type Libraries
Our collection of Mergenthaler Linotype drawings consists of 3,193 black boxes, specially made for storing the drawings. Each box has 100 to 140 sheets, one for each glyph. Each sheet is numbered and there is a summary sheet indicating what glyphs are enclosed. When we received the collection from the Smithsonian 20 years ago, we inventoried every box and prepared a spreadsheet with information on each box. In many cases, the source of the fonts is indicated.
From 1920 to 1960 the Linotype library dominated typeface use. There were fewer than 100 US Monotype services and only ATF and Ludlow had unique fonts, mostly for display. Then came Photon, Compugraphic, GSI, Wang, Varityper, Alphatype, Autologic, Triple-I, and many others. They all needed type libraries and stole freely from Linotype. There is no law against this.
Museum donates 480 lbs of ink to schools
The Museum of Printing in Haverhill, Mass. has donated 96 5-lb cans of ink to several schools with graphic arts programs. The ink was acquired from the many letterpress shops donated to the Museum over the course of several years.
“It is amazing how many letterpress operations are still around. Often they are in basements and garages. Museum volunteers clean them out and move them to the Museum,” said Ted Leigh, Acquisitions Director. “We move all equipment, type, paper, ink, and other materials.”
Robert Bringhurst in Boston, April 2017
Robert Bringhurst and Amelia Hugill-Fontanel at the Society of Printers 43rd Annual W.A. Dwiggins Lecture at the Boston Public Library.
Bringhurst is the noted type historian and poet who spoke on the life and work of type designer Hermann Zapf. Amelia made the trek from Rochester, NY where she is Associate Curator for the RIT Cary Collection.
Download our Letterpress Presses poster (pdf, 1.8 MB)
Download our Image Carrier Poster (pdf, 684 KB)
Programs are supported in part by grants from the Haverhill, Georgetown, Merrimac, Boxford and West Newbury Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.Top ↑