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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Volunteer Night at the Museum this Thursday!

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

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Japanese Bookbinding

Here is a brief sketch of the development of the Japanese book binding trade from its early development to its commercial beginnings and eventual industrialization written by Dana Gee. The word in Japanese for bookbinding is seihon. Papermaking was developed in China during the Han dynasty in the second century

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A Celebration of International Poetry: Eliza Griswold Thursday July, 9th @ 7:00pm

A Celebration of International Poetry: Eliza Griswold Thursday July, 9th @7:00 pm The Poetry Society of America continues its 2015 series, A Celebration of International Poetry, in collaboration with the American Bookbinders Museum in San Francisco.

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Pension societies and Almshouses for Bookbinders

This post is the second of a series of features written by our archivist, Jae Mauthe, exploring the development of charitable organizations devoted to social services for bookbinders. The industrial revolution brought about many changes to the worklife of bookbinders. Bookbinder John Jaffery sought social reform in Victorian London through

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(Another) Building Update!

Building work continues, and we are making plans to move back into the Folsom Street location.  So, what does the place look like now? Well, it’s still a bit of a construction site; however, the finishing details are beginning to emerge.  Our walls are painted.

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A Brief History of Wove Paper

This week we have a guest feature from Marieka Kaye, Conservation Librarian and Book Conservator from the University of Michigan Library.  In this article, she will be telling us about a book she’s recently been working on as a entry into exploring, briefly, the history of wove paper.

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Bound to be Held: A Book Show

Our neighbors at the Contemporary Jewish Museum have a book exhibit opening tomorrow. Celebrating the book as object, artist Josh Greene turns the gallery into a place where celebrities and private individuals present books that have been important to their lives, and shared readings take place over the run of

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