All posts by Conor Pattenden

Bulletin XXI

We haven’t posted here for a long time, as nobody reads it, but will endeavour to post more regularly. A new bulletin is available, now up to number twenty-one, a short one with twenty recent acquisitions including mining disasters, shipwrecks, riots, demonstrations and gold printing – click on the cover below…

Bulletin XXI – Recent Acquisitions

New Year – New Bulletin

Happy new year to everyone

The first Bulletin of the year, on the first day of the year, is Bulletin XVIII, a collection of trade cards and tickets, illustrating the commercial and cultural life of mid-nineteenth century Glasgow.

Bulletin XVIII

Almost from the cradle to the grave, we find amongst others, trade cards for tailors, sail makers, shoe makers, boiler makers, taverns, cabinet makers, confectioners, lithographers, painters, paper hangers and undertakers.

Cultural pursuits include musical concerts, art exhibitions, soirees, educational classes, philosophy and art classes.

Glasgow was effectively the Second City of the Empire, with several industries at varying times employing large numbers of people, including the linen industry, locomotive manufacturing and of course shipbuilding (See Meighan, Glasgow – A History)

Bristol Bookbinders Society

Bristol Bookbinders Society

A recent acquisition for the biblio-ephemera collection here at ZHQ, an attractively engraved trade union card for the Bristol Bookbinders Society. The card has not been filled out, but notes that the bearer ‘having served a legal Apprenticeship to the Trade is entitled to participate in all its advantages’.  The Union was formed in March 1831, and their motto was ‘We are United to Support, But not Combined to Injure’.

The Historical Directory of Trade Unions – Volume Five, notes that the rules “drawn up in that year are still available, but no subsequent information has been found”. The Jaffray collection in the BL, (Jaffray was himself a bookbinder and interested in the history of his trade and particularly trade union and welfare issues) holds a document noting the cash amount held for the Society ending March 1833 (probably just the year ending for the Society rather than the end of its existence), so we know it lasted until at least 1833, but I haven’t been able to find out anything further about it.

Howe refers to Jaffray’s collection in his A List of London Bookbinders 1648-1815, but Jaffray himself does not appear in Packer’s Bookbinders of Victorian London, so he probably always worked for other bookbinders.

The later Bookbinders and Machine Ruler’s Consolidated Union used almost the same motto, ‘United to Support but Not Combined to Injure’

Catalogue XIII – William Morris

Catalogue XIII – The Politics of William Morris and Related Items is now available. Ninety items, with some rare Morris forgeries and sophistications by Buxton Forman, including items known in only a single copy to LeMire.

The story of Forman and Wise is well known within book circles, with the classic expose, An Enquiry into the Nature of Certain Nineteenth Century Pamphlets  by Carter and Pollard, followed (much) later by Barker and Collins’ Sequel to an Enquiry and then Collins’ biography of the two, The Two Forgers.

One example of a Forman sophistication is item 45 in the above catalogue, Morris’ Chants for Socialists. This is a Buxton Forman wrapper forgery.

Forman states that copies “are occasionally found in a red wrapper … but they were not originally issued in wrappers”. Quaritch catalogue 926, 1973, item 88, offered two copies of this pamphlet (one with the forged wrapper and one without), and a three page autograph note by Buxton Forman explaining the history of the wrappers; the wrapper and this note are reproduced in Collins’ The Two Forgers (plates 37 and 38). Barker and Collins state that “no copies thus bound have been located except one of the two sold in the last Forman sale at Sotheby’s, 12 April 1972, with the note quoted above” (Barker and Collins, A Sequel to An Inquiry, page 204) [and subsequently appearing in the above Quaritch catalogue]

The same two copies and Forman’s note (now owned by John Collins) were sold at the Schimmel Forgery Collection sale at Bonhams on the 23rd May, 2012 (Lot 208, selling for £437).

Barker and Collins conclude that this is “a chimaera, with a false wrapper, intended to ‘improve’ a genuine pamphlet”

So a very uncommon pamphlet, probably only the second known copy

Associated Bookbinders of Chester

An invitation / ticket for the (first?) anniversary dinner of the Associated Bookbinders of Chester, June 28, 1828, with a wonderful typographic border. It was held at the Ermine Inn, in Flookersbrook.

Henry Evans was the President of the Associated Bookbinders, he appears in an 1826 Poll Book as a bookbinder in Linen-Hall Street, Chester, but doesn’t appear in the Pigot’s Commercial Directory under Bookbinders for 1828-9 (there are six other bookbinders listed in Chester).

It appears to have been clipped to the centre of the bottom edge, so was presumably used by the bearer to attend, the dinner cost 4s 6d.

I haven’t been able to find out anything about the Associated Bookbinders, whether they were just a social club, or more like a friendly society or an early trade union

 

Sturt’s Silver Penny

Some time ago (February and March 2015), I posted a couple of notes about ‘sombre’ bindings, one of the areas of interest here at ZHQ. The March post was mainly about the engraved, on silver plates, edition of a Common Prayer by John Sturt.

Sturt was apprenticed to White, himself a pupil of Loggan’s, was well known for his miniature work, “it was said that he could engrave the creed on a silver penny, a claim amply reinforced by his best-known works: engraved versions of the Book of Common Prayer and of Laurence Howell’s The Orthodox Communicant, published respectively by subscription in 1717 and 1721. The first of these books, executed on 188 silver plates adorned with borders and vignettes, had a frontispiece portrait of King George I, the lines for which were composed of the creed, the Lord’s prayer, the ten commandments, a prayer for the royal family, and Psalm 21, all inscribed in minute characters” (ODNB)

At the recent PBFA Cambridge book fair, we found an engraving of the Sturt Silver Penny for sale with James of Alastor Rare Books – www.alastorrarebooks.com – now happily ensconced inside the Common Prayer.

Sturt's Silver Penny

It is a remarkable piece of engraving, with the Lord’s Prayer in full within a circle with a diameter of 10mm. The engraving as a whole has a diameter of 50mm

Bulletin VIII

Bulletin VIII is now available – to view please click on the cover below. A short bulletin of ten items made up of membership cards and tickets, including a ticket to the coronation of George IV and a membership card of O’Connell’s Repeal Association.

We are hoping to have a new politics catalogue ready soon, as well as a cartes de visite catalogue

Bulletin VIII