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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Ceci Ne Pas Un Printing Press

Patent diagram for James Watts copying press, 1780 In 1780 the Scots inventor James Watt (also the inventor of the steam engine) patented two versions of the copying press, which is notable as the only press not generally used by industrial printers and bookbinders. An ingenious device, its original purpose

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St. Bartholomew Day

August 24th is Bartlemas, the Feast of St. Bartholomew, a fascinating character who, among other things, is the patron saint of leather workers, tanners, shoemakers, and bookbinders. When Bartholomew converted Polymius, the king of Armenia, to Christianity, Polymius’s brother Astyages ordered the missionary’s execution: tradition has it he was flayed

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Volunteer Meetup at the Museum Tonight!

We are so excited for our first monthly Volunteer Night tonight, July 23rd at 7pm.  This is a time for you to meet museum volunteers and staff, take a tour of the museum and hear about our upcoming projects. If you cannot make this event please sign up here so we

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