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John G. Cooley Wood Type

John G. Cooley Wood Type

40-Line Antique Condensed (?) This recent purchase has the J. G. Cooley, New York makers mark. This places the date of manufacturing between 1859 and 1868. I told my Sister in-law that I’m now going to expect to find letterpress type every time I come to visit. Last visit I picked a few sorts at an antique store near her house. Prior to this visit she struck gold and found the “Bonanza”. Part of the lot was a small set of 60pt Cheltenham Condensed bold caps lead type. Pretty abused. We’ll have to see how well it prints. On the surface it looks like a few pieces might have been dropped, flattening a few serifs. Then there is about a 4A set of 10-line Gothic wood blocks that look pretty old. A decent amount of Tuscan sorts, but some are fragile and have cracks, if not already split. It was nice to find a matching letter “J” among my sorts. This batch truly showed that it was a barn find (see below). The feature of this find is the John G. Cooley 40-line Antique Condensed, circa 1868. This is a large set. Multiples of every letter except the “Z” and the “M”. The above sorts includes some unique letters. You have to love the lowercase Tuscan Condensed “g”. Who wouldn’t want an entire set of Antique Double Outline Shaded? I’ll settle for a beat-up old...
Another Antique Store Find

Another Antique Store Find

Whenever I walk into an antique store I always hope to find something letterpress. It doesn’t happen very often. There’s a nice store in Gardnerville, NV that we go to when visiting family. I really didn’t feel lucky at the slot machines so I told everyone I’d rather go across the street to the antique store. Guess I was the winner of the day. I didn’t hit rich but I did find a few gold nuggets. There was a large enough selection of wood type to look through. Cheap enough that I even thought about buying every letter they had. Instead I chose wisely. I hadn’t been very luck at the Casino the night before so I didn’t want to spend too much. I found 17 letter blocks. Enough to put a smile on my face. One of the more interesting letter was a letter “Q”. It has the appearance that it was roughly cut. Was this an actual font, or an unskilled attempt at hand made type? So I referred to Rob Roy Kelly’s book, American Wood Type 1828 to 1900. It appears to be Ben Franklin.   My favorite of the recent find are 8-letters that appear to be some sort of Antique Extended. Although these 5-line blocks appear to be ultra extended. Still trying to locate a font specimen for reference. The rest of the bunch is nothing to much, just nice additions to the misc. drawer. As you can tell from the photo, I have a little cleaning to do be for there get put...
Wood Type Star Border

Wood Type Star Border

A recent visit to the Hamilton Wood Type web site led to the purchase of some Star Borders. Every once in a while I see vintage pieces of borders pop up on an online action. Vintage is nice, but to pick up several freshly minted pieces at a fair price is even nicer. I’m a happy printer. Thank You Hamilton Printing Museum for making these available to those of use in the world that cherish such an...
Cheltenham Wood Type

Cheltenham Wood Type

Let’s just say I may have been overly excited when I found this type at an antique store. I don’t no about you, but I have a formula for how much I like to pay for wood type. Needless to say, I paid up for this lot. I tried to negotiate but there wasn’t much give. Don’t get me wrong, I have no buyers remorse. Just didn’t want to pay full price for numbers and punctuation. Then again, I didn’t want to see anymore of the set broken up. Serif type is a premium, and Solid type with matching inline will always put a smile on your face. That is if you’re into letterpress printing. So here it is, 10-line Cheltenham Bold Condensed with inline Wood Type. Might be extra condensed. I haven’t found a type speciman. Although it’s Hamilton, marked Two Rivers,...
30-Line Gothic Poster

30-Line Gothic Poster

It wasn’t a light package the delivery man left at the front door. You would expect a big box of letterpress 5″ wood type to be on the heftier side. And it was. About a year ago I had already filled on drawer of the Hamilton Case with 18-Line All Caps Gothic Poster. Any day you can fill a drawer with wood type is a good day. Today is a better than average day because 3o-line Poster Gothic filled two drawers. I also spent some of the morning, while I waited for the Fedex truck, cleaning a drawer of 10-line De Vinne recently acquired at the San Jose Printer’s Fair. About half way there, and it’s cleaning up real...
A Package From Romania

A Package From Romania

Been looking at some wood type by PetrescuPress (Now Wood Type Customs) on ebay and etsy. They are out of Romania and the price seems very reasonable. So I decided to buy some simple motifs to see if it looked as good in real life. The package finally arrived, all the way from Romania. It’s not an overnight delivery… It takes a while. But a first impression is that it is well worth the wait. The quality looks good. I haven’t inked ’em up yet, but I hope to soon. I bought 8-line Palmette Motifs No. 5, 7 and 10. I also picked up some 8-line mixed stars. The best thing is that the Palmette Motifs No. 7 and 10 give me some more options when used with my Virgin Wood Type’s 8-line Wolske...