Time Honored Techniques: Bookbinding Manuals from 1650-1880

“Time Honored Techniques: Bookbinding Manuals from 1650-1880”, an exhibition of bookbinding manuals from the museum’s collection, reflecting changes in culture and technology, is open at the ABM through January 15, 2015. Exhibition curator Tom Conroy reflects on the use and purpose of the manuals.

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The Ruler, a Bookbinders Poem

The Ruler by Samuel O. Spaeth Down by dot Hiccough ruling machine Der bindery ruler stands. Mit six days’ viskers on his face Und ink all ofer his hands.

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How Would They Look if They Weren’t Well Bound? – A Bookbinders Song

The Bookbinder’s Song “Be man’s peculiar work his sole delight.”–Minstrel, Book 1 Air: “Johnny Lump’s Visit to Somerset House” Ere Printing began the dark ages to mend, On volumes of parchment their writings were penned. Now fine printed books in abundance are found, But how would they look if they

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the Kathleen V. Roberts Collection of Decorated Publishers Bindings comes to the ABM!

The American Bookbinders Museum is thrilled to announce that we are the new (permanent) home of the Kathleen V. Roberts Collection of Decorated Publishers’ Bindings. Described by Rachel Jones of the publication Seven Days as “an expertly curated selection of bindings made by hand between 1830 and the 1950s”, this

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German Bookbinders Song of 1842

Who can be more contented, With life as ‘tis presented To us who bind the books? Our work is full of pleasures, We bind the richest treasures, And beautify their looks. CHORUS: Hallo, Halli, Hallo, Halli, The Binder’s life for me!

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The Bookbinder’s Song

When bookbinders got together in the 18th and 19th century, they talked shop over a pot of ale, or several pots of ale. Sometimes songs resulted, often full of puns on bookbinding terminology, and always celebrating the craft that elevated printed words into something “improved.” Later, the songs were more likely

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Foursquare in the House

For some months Foursquare, our neighbors next door, dealt with noise and dust as the Bookbinders Museum went from a blank space to a beautiful showcase for bookbinding equipment and ephemera. Such patience must be rewarded, so last night we hosted a gathering from their office, as a way of saying

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Explore the Prelinger Library

Take a look at this interesting article on our friends Megan and Rick Prelinger and their incredible collection of random discoveries. Discover their story here

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Preservationist Restores a Chapter of Virginia’s Colonial Past

An interesting article that briefly outlines the process that a rare book conservator is taking in the restoration of a rare 2 volume botanical guide.  The guide  “Figures of the Most Beautiful, Useful Plants Described in the Gardener’s Dictionary,” written by Philip Miller and published in 1760, is part of the University

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Happy Letterpress Appreciation Day!

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