Type at the CircuitousRoot Press

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1. Why

Why? After all, this list won't do you any good at all, since I don't print commercially.

Well, partly it's because even though these Notebooks are online, they're still just my Notebooks - and I need to keep notes about this or I forget.

It's also a bit of a tradition among printers to list the types they have. Before the days of computer typesetting (where everyone has a gazillion "fonts" on their computer - mostly bad, often pirated) the list of fonts available defined much of the capabilities, and even the character, of a press. Both commercial and noncommercial presses often went so far as to print their own Specimen Books illustrating all of the fonts they had, and the work they could do with them. (Recall, a "font" is a specific typeface at a specific body (point) size, for handset type composed of a finite number of individual pieces of type.)

I don't really have a very good collection of handset type. This doesn't matter, because I'm not a very good printer - more and better type would be wasted on me. I'm also concentrating on casting my own type. But, for what it's worth, here's what I have for handset composition:

Four of the sets of fonts included here were each "firsts" for me: the first type I ever bought (Blanchard), the first type I ever bought new (Baskerville), the first type I ever printed with (Spartan), and the first type I ever helped to cast (Hadriano Stone Cut).

[TO DO: Proof these and scan the proofs.]

2. Baskerville, 12, 24

Typeface: Monotype Baskerville

Sizes: 12, 18

Condition: new

History: McGrew notes that (Lanston) Monotype Baskerville was cut in 1931 and based on the 1923 Monotype (UK) cutting. By way of contrast, Linotype's Baskerville was cut in 1926 and based on (but not idential to) the ATF/"Fry" Baskerville. When I get the first Linotype running, it'll be interesting to compare the two of them, as I have Baskerville mats.

This was the first type I purchased after acquiring the first round of Linotypes and presses, in 2008. I got it new, directly from M & H Type.

3. Blanchard, 24, 28 60

Typeface: Blanchard

Sizes: 24, 48, 60

Condition: worn

History: Cast by the Inland Type Foundry from 1900 {McGrew, pp 36-37}.

This was my first type. We bought it at an antique store in Toledo, Ohio, in 2006 or 2007 - well before I ever knew I'd have a shop full of Linotypes and presses.

4. Copperplate Gothic Heavy: 6 nos. 21 & 22

Typeface: ATF Heavy Copperplate Gothic

[Note: At present, these are primarily fonts for study, not for setting. I wanted New Old Stock ATF type, especially with unbroken seals) for (a) possible metallurgical comparison and (b) comparison with equivalent Ludlow faces. For actual printing, I have the Ludlow Equivalent (Lining Plate Gothic Heavy) and I'll use it for now.]


Copperplate Gothic is a caps-only typeface.

Size Notes: The several body sizes each had multiple lining face sizes. The numbering for these face sizes, however, was not sequential within the body size, but serial throughout the range of body sizes. Thus, where Ludlow had Lining Plate Gothic 6pt Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4 and then 12pt Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, ATF had Heavy Copperplate Gothic 6pt Nos. 21, 22, 23, 24 and then 12pt No.s 25, 26, 27, 28. The 6pt No. 21 is tiny

History: Designed 1903 by Frederic W. Goudy (C.G. Heavy was first design, by Goudy; other weights and widths later by others at ATF). {McGrew, pp. 106-107}

Ludlow equivalent: Lining Plate Gothic Heavy.

Note: McGrew says that Copperplate Gothic is "known as Spartan in England"; it has no relation to ATF's Spartan, a copy of Futura.

Purchased May 1, 2010 at the annual Type Sale at Paul Aken's Platen Press Museum, Zion, IL. $10/font

5. Hadriano Stone Cut, 24

Typeface: Hadriano Stone Cut

Sizes: 24

Condition: new

History: Cast by Skyline Type Foundry 2009.

Hadriano Stone Cut is Sol Hess' modification of Goudy's Hadriano.

I helped Sky Shipley of Skyline Type Foundry to cast 52 fonts of this at the 2009 combined APA Wayzgoose and Midwest & Great Northern Printers' Fair in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. It was cast on a Thompson, from matrices electroformed by the late Andy Dunker.

I don't think I'll ever be able to print from this font. It's just too important to me as type itself.

6. Spartan [Futura], 36, 48, 60

Typeface: Spartan Heavy

Sizes: 60, uppercase only

Condition: worn, dinged

Typeface: Spartan Medium

Sizes: 36, 48

Condition: worn, dinged

History: ATF's copy of Bauer's Futura {McGrew, pp 36-37}. I need to verify that this is in fact Spartan, as opposed to Monotype Twentieth Century.

See also note at ATF's Spartan (apparantly in England "Spartan" was a name used for Copperplate Gothic).

This was a gift from Rachel Scott, Duane Scott's daughter. She assume that it was so far gone that I could use it only for recasting, and so gave it to me as a sample of foundry typemetal. I, on the other hand, intend to print from it. I used it for my very first printing on 2009-10-22 (in 60 pt).

7. ATF Handy Boxes

[fractions - acqired at an antique store in the early 2000s]

8. Borders


9. Flowers and Ornaments


10. Cuts, Emblems, Etc.


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