Saturday, September 19, 2009

Heil Hikler

The paean to Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift was occasioned by seeing this bookjacket for A History of Modexn Gexmany: The Reformation by Hajo Holborn (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1959) a few weeks ago. I was immediately struck by its spelling. In the calligraphic portion of the title Guy Fleming, the book and jacket designer, had ignorantly substituted x for r in both Modern and Germany. How this escaped the German author is anyone’s guess, though it is not surprising that the American publisher was unaware of the faux pas. 

The mistake reminded me immediately of a book which I saw in the 1980s at Barnes & Noble. It was a biography of that famous German leader, Adolf Hikler! The designer had, in this case, mistaken a k in a blackletter font for a decorative form of t. (See the k in Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift to see how easy this can happen to those unfamiliar with blackletter and why Adobe/Linotype and Stephen Miggas both sought to modernize the letter.) 

In turn, the Hikler (sic) biography reminded me of Wilhelmschrift by Stephen Miggas which I had only recently come across on the My Fonts website and how appalled I was to see his solution for this problem: using the tz ligature as a substitute. Go ahead and modernize the archaic characters in blackletter fonts, but do so with a firm knowledge of the calligraphic basis behind these typefaces. And make sure you know what the characters actually are.  

Friday, September 18, 2009

Addendum to Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift

Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift is usually reproduced in large sizes (48 pt or 60 pt) because they show the face at its most elegant. But, as a metal type, it was cast by Klingspor in a range of sizes that were optically scaled. At the smaller text sizes Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift was shorn of its delicate decorations. And, as was typical of metal faces, it was made sturdier, wider and with an increased x-height. This is illustrated on p. 24 of Über Schönheit von Schrift und Druck by Dr. Karl Klingspor (Frankfurt am Main: Georg Kurt Schauer, 1949). Three grades of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift are shown in figs. 1, 2, and 3; fig. 4 shows it at 10 pt; fig. 5 at 60 pt scaled down to 10 pt; fig. 6 at 60 pt; and fig. 7 at 10 pt scaled up to 60 pt. 

Paean to Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift: Textura in pinstripes

One of the most impressive metal typefaces of the 20th c. is Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift (also known as Wilhelm Klingspor Gotisch) designed by Rudolf Koch between 1919 and 1926 for the Klingspor Foundry in Offenbach am Main. It is a blackletter, specifically a textura. But it is no ordinary textura. It is sharp. Both in the sense of being spiky (as Steve Heller would expect of a blackletter) and in the sense of being natty. Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift is elegant. It is the diametric opposite of the rough hewn Deutschschrift (1910), Koch’s first blackletter. 

The elegance of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift is partially due to its delicate decoration, the thin (but subtly swelling) lines that parallel or bridge strokes in the capitals. But it is also due to the hairline endings that terminate each stroke in both the capitals and the lowercase. The graceful curves, most notable in the capitals but also present in lowercase letters such as d, h and w, also play a role. The broad-edged pen is evident everywhere. 

The available digital versions of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift are disappointing. Adobe/Linotype’s version (called Wilhelm Klingspor Gotisch) is beautiful but not entirely faithful. To appeal to modern eyes not used to certain blackletter characters k, x and X have been redesigned. The new designs are well-done but the diagonal x disrupts the darkness and vertical patterning of a block of text. A version called Wilhelmschrift from Stephen Miggas (Aerotype, 2006) repeats the same modern x, even though it is ostensibly based on a 1927 Klingspor Foundry specimen book showing. More seriously, Miggas replaces the original k with the tz ligature! (Oddly, neither Adobe/Linotype nor Miggas sought to redesign the A which is often mistaken for a U.)

In trying to make Koch’s face suitable for an OpenType world Miggas creates a number of characters that never existed in the original: per thousand, aesch, thorn, Spanish accents, Æ and Œ dipthongs, guillemets, etc. Some are bearable (the Œ dipthong), some are crude but understandable (the @ sign), some show a misunderstanding of the calligraphic underpinning of the typeface (the double dagger ), and others are ridiculous mashups (the thorn ð which is created from an upended 9 with a bar through it). Adobe/Linotype hasn’t done any better. Many of these characters are left in generic sans serif form while those that are designed range from the inept to the dull. The dollar sign is acceptable but not imaginative while the euro, yen (¥)and florin (ƒ) are all abysmal, the  Æ and Œ dipthongs are worse than those of Miggas, and the pilchrow is ludicrous. 
But the most disappointing thing about both the Miggas and Adobe/Linotype versions of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift is the paucity of characters available. Koch’s original design included two sets of capitals (normal and condensed); alternates for a, d, e, r, s and z (plus long s); short and long decorative flourished finial forms for f and t; and 35 ligatures. The only accented characters are for German and Scandinavian languages (umlauts and o-rings). There are also 33 decorative elements called Zierstücke. They are shown on p. 109 of Rudolf Koch: Letterer, Type Designer, Teacher by Gerald Cinamon (New Castle, Delaware: Oak Knoll Press and London: The British Library, 2000). Wilhelm Klingspor Gotisch has only 15 of the ligatures and none of the alternates, finial forms or decorative elements. The capitals in Wilhelmschrift are an arbitrary mix of the normal (A, F, H, K, M, S, T, U, W, Y and Z) and condensed forms (B, C, D, E, G, I,  L, N, O, P, Q and R). (The J is actually the wide I and V seems to have been created from the wide W.) The font has none of the ligatures other than the dipthongs and none of the alternates or finial. Koch’s pilchrow, a medieval capitulum form, has been ignored. Miggas’ Wilhelmschrift Ornaments font contains all of the Zierstücke plus a few additional calligraphic flourishes.  

The glory of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift, its large character set designed to accomplish justification following the tricks of the scribe (ligatures and narrow characters and the occasional extended finial character), is lost in the digital versions. This is a typeface that should thrive in the OpenType world. 

Note: the sample of Wilhelm-Klingspor-Schrift above was set in metal by Michael Babcock of Interrobang Press. The first two lines show the normal or wide capitals. The third and fourth lines show the narrow capitals and the accented capitals (both wide and narrow—the narrow Ä and Ü have been transposed). The lowercase letters in lines five and six include the alternates. Line six has all of the accented lowercase characters, including f and long s ligatures—and the iron cross. Lines seven and eight show the remainder of the ligatures and the finial characters. The figures and punctuation are on line nine (note that Koch did not design brackets or braces). 

The ligatures in lines eight and nine are, in order: ae, ch, ck, es, fa, fe, ff, ffi, fi, fl, fo, fr, ft, fu, ll, oe / long s a, long s ch, long s e, long s i, long s o, long s p, long s long s, eszett ß, long s long s i, long s t, long s u, tt and tz

Blue Pencil no. 5

Type: A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles 1628–1900 vol. 1
edited by Cees W. de Jong, Alston W. Purvis and Jan Tholenaar
texts by Jan Tholenaar and Cees W. de Jong
(Hong Kong, Köln, London et al—Taschen, 2009)

The book comes with a keycard that allows the buyer/reader to access and download 1069 high resolution (jpeg format) images for free and without restrictions on their use. 

The 134 page-website displays 8 images per page. Each is tagged with the title of the item, and information about the year it was published, the city where it was published and the type foundry that published it. This last tag is a problem as a number of the items were not issued by type foundries. Instead the type specimens come from printers and trade journals. However, the images are not individually numbered. 

Most of the images are identical to those in the book, but some are new, either additional pages from a specimen or a specimen discussed but not shown (eg. the 1818 Manuale Tipografico of Giambattista Bodoni). Also, the images in the book that are printed in gold and taken out of context are available as complete pages in their original colors. Images that are full spreads in specimens are offered in two halves, a recto and a verso—but not consecutively. Matching the halves requires some searching. For example, see images 14–18 (p. 2 on the website) from the Épreuves Générales des Caractères from Claude Lamesle (Paris, 1742) which match images 20–24 (p. 3 of the website). (In the book the Lamesle specimen is reproduced on pp. 80–81.

Some of the additional images from specimens are mainly of interest to bibliographers and librarians since they are bindings or covers that show little or nothing in the way of type. A prime example is the very first image on the website which is a blank page from the Indice de Caratteri (Rome: Stampa Vaticana, 1628). 

Some of the information on the website is wrong. 

One of the new items is Specimen of Printing Types by Caslon & Livermore, Letter-Founders, Chiswell Street, London (items 2 and 3, p. 1). It is identified as having been issued in 1710 which is an impossibility since William Caslon had not yet begun his career as a typefounder. Since there is no date on the cover this must be one of the specimens that Nicolete Gray lists from the period 1831–1835, but which one I do not know. 

Items 4–11 (pp. 1 and 2) are identified as being from this Caslon & Livermore specimen, but they clearly are not. Items 6 and 7 are from the 1891 Muster-Austausch published by Lothringer Zeitung Buchdruckerei of Metz; item 8 is a spread showing faces from the Schriftgiesserei Flinsch (with one item dated 1893); item 9 is a spread showing faces from the Rudhard’sche Giesserei; and items 4, 5 and 11 are identical! (the image contains the date 1862 but nothing that identifies the foundry). 

Items 205 and 206 (p. 26), 217 and 218 (p. 28) attributed to the Journal für Buchdruckerkunst, Schriftgießerei und die verwanden Fächer (1835), are identical (see p. 112 of the book). Images 213 and 221 (p. 27 and p. 28) are also identical (see p. 113 of the book).

Items 428–431 (p. 54) are attributed to Anglaise Gravure from E. Houpied (Paris, 1883) but at the bottom they are signed Cincinnati Type Foundry (see pp. 242–243 of the book which reproduces pages from the 1888 Specimen Book from the Cincinnati Type Foundry). 

Items 575 (p. 72) and 580 (p. 73) are identical as are items 577 and 580 (both p. 73). All are from Type Specimens (James Connor’s Sons, 1888). [The website inaccurately refers to the foundry as James Connor & Sons.]

Item 526 (p. 79) is upside down. It is from Buch- und Zeitungsschriften from the Rudhard’sche Giesserei which the dates to 1890 but is probably from 1891 or later. It includes sample material dated 1891. Furthermore, its design aesthetic is radically different from a second specimen book from the Rudhard’sche Geisserei (also dated 1890) included both in the book and online. It is unlikely that a typefoundry would issue two large visually unrelated specimen books in a single year.

Items 346–354 (pp. 44–45) are listed as from Specimens of Types (The Marr Typefounding Company, 1877). The binding has the title as Specimen of Types and the name of the foundry as The Marr Typefounding Co., Limited.

Not surprisingly, some of the faults of the book are repeated online, most notably a fuzziness about what constitutes a foundry. Thus, under the heading foundry one finds trade publications such as The Linotype Bulletin; printers for such publications (e.g. Johann Heinrich Meyer for the Journal für Buchdruckerkunst, Schriftgießerei und die verwandten Fächer, Alexander Waldow for the Archiv für Buchdruckerkunst; and Theodor Goebel for Die Graphischen Künste der Gegenwart; printers’ specimen exchanges such as the Internationaler Grafischer Muster-Austausch (1895); and printers H.C.A. Thieme, Hemlandsvannens Tryckeri, Rand & Avery, and the United States Label-Printing Establishment. The foundries who advertised in these publications are not mentioned, even though their names (Flinsch, Genzsch & Heyse, Benjamin Krebs, Julius Klinkhardt, Roos & Junge and others) are clearly visible to anyone who looks. 

These faults and others that are in the book Type: A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles 1628–1900 will be detailed in an upcoming Blue Pencil post. 

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Prevalence of Italian

This year both David Shields (Austin, Texas)—“A Short History of the Italian” in The Journal of St Bride Library—and James Clough (Milano, Italy)—“The ‘Italian’ Monstrosity” in TypoItalia 1—have written about the famously bizarre Italian typeface that Caslon & Catherwood launched in 1821. And Nick Sherman of MyFonts (and the Woodtyper blog) has pointed out that we now have two digital interpretations of the design (Slab Sheriff by Alex Sheldon of Match & Kerosene—an appropriate design for such an incendiary foundry—and Caslon Italian by Paul Barnes). Caslon Italian is shown in the Clough article and at It should be noted that Peter Bain of Incipit may have been the first to jump on the Italian bandwagon when he adopted the lowercase Figgins version of the face (1846) for his identity system nearly ten years ago. 

A few weeks ago Taschen published Type: A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles, Volume I: 1628–1900 edited by Cees W. de Jong, Alston W. Purvis and Jan Tholenaar. The book is actually a showing of type specimens from foundries, printers and trade journals that Tholenaar collected. The book is a visual treat, although the prevalence of late 19th c. specimens can be wearying after awhile (a bit like eating too much cotton candy). One thing that caught my attention was the prevalence of Italian in specimens from a wide variety of countries (supporting one of the points Clough made in his article). Here is my tally of the showings:

Fonderie de E. Tarbé (Paris, 1835)—Italian used for PARIS on title page
sample page from Journal für Buchdruckerkunst, Schriftgiesserei und die verwanden Fächer (1835 according to the authors but more likely 1838 based on the images)—shows Phantasieschrift no. 2, an Italian from F. Schoch’sche Schriftschneiderei und Giesserei in Augsburg
Ornemens et Fleurons (Laurent & de Berny, 1838)—No. 60 Italiennes (2 P. de St.-Augustin) is a solid Italian with an outline shadow (as in the Porto sample below); a regular Italian is used for the heading of Égyptiennes-Blanches
Specimens of Printing Types Cast by Geo. Bruce & Co. (1848)—Italian used for 13 CHAMBERS-STREET on the title page; there is also a showing of Five-Line Pica Italian
Specimen Fundição de Typos Imprensa Nacional (Lisbon, 1858)—No. 22 (Corpo 20) is an outline Italian with a shadow; a regular Italian appears on its p. 40 for the word LISBOA (set on a curve!)
Geo. C. Rand & Avery, Printers (Boston, 1867)—Four-Line Pica Italian with different serifs on T and S than those in the Caslon model; there is also a lowercase
Specimen of the Fundição Tipographica Portuense (Porto, 1874)—No. 232 (Corpo 28) on its p. 54 is a solid Italian with an open shadow 
Letterproef from Algemeene Landsdrukkerij (The Hague, 1876)—Dubbele Parel Italienne on its p. 35

My next post will be a Blue Pencil look at this Taschen book.

From the Archives no. 8: The New Typography Hits a Speed Bump in the United States

This editorial from Vanity Fair is a small but telling indication of the difficulty that the new typography had in gaining a toe-hold in America in the late 1920s and 1930s. When the anonymous author refers to the “new typography” he is probably speaking of die neue Typographie of Jan Tschichold et al in mind, but it is not entirely clear since he mentions it as having started c.1920 and associates it with advertising. Many design observers in the late 1920s and early 1930s used the terms “modern typography” and “new typography” to refer more to Art Deco experiments in France than to the theories emerging from Germany and Eastern Europe.

The subtitle of the article is repeated three times to show the various options available typographically. 

Vanity Fair

March 1930

“in VANITY FAIR; a note on typography / A NOTE ON TYPOGRAPHY / A Note on Typography”

p. 31

Vanity Fair presents the case pro and con capital letters in titles, writing finis to an experiment

Vanity Fair has for the past several months omitted capital letters in the titles and sub-titles of its articles and illustrations. The hawk-eyed reader will note that this issue of Vanity Fair returns to capital letters. Posterity anyway will be grateful for a review of the considerations that have led Vanity Fair, first to dispense with capital letters in its headings and now, after a trial period of five issues, to return to them.

Typography without capital letters was introduced in Europe soon after the Great War and has been working westward ever since. It has not been used so much in text, but in all situations where the value of display is paramount it has been extremely popular. Thus, the intense competition of advertising, where the least optical advantage makes itself felt at once, has already made the modern typography familiar to Americans.

[paragraph 3 explains how capitals derive from the Romans and small letters from the time of Charlemagne and how the two were fused together in the Renaissance as part of the revival of classical learning, and then adopted by punchcutters] It would now seem illogical to continue to submit to what was simply an historical accident, a symbol for the conceit the Renaissance felt in its newly acquired sophistication in the culture of Rome. Probably, as a matter of fact, the mere omission of a capital letter to indicate the beginning of a sentence or a title is the least significant or permanent item in the program of the new typography.

Any art, particularly any art with a function as utilitarian as that of typography, consciously or unconsciously conforms itself to the peculiar temper of the living and contemporary civilization.

The realization of this end takes the form of the arrangement of pictures on the page, of various kinds of type, of new methods of photography, of decorative treatment, of the massing of type on the page, and so forth. And incidentally the omission of capital letters in titles. All this is really compulsory for any magazine that pretends at all to a place in the modern parade. Nothing would amuse and shock the reader more than to pick up a current magazine composed in the fussy and dignified convention of the magazines of the 1880’s. 

The eye and the mind can adapt themselves to new forms with surprising ease. An innovation stands out at first like a sore thumb but before it has passed its infancy it has become invisible to the conscious eye. The unconscious eye, however, is another matter. It is vaguely dulled by the stale and hackneyed, it is antagonized by the tasteless and inept, and it is completely stopped by the involved and illegible. The unconscious eye is a remorseless critic of all art forms, it awards the final fame and the final oblivion. Thus, the conscious eye may endorse at the very moment that the unconscious eye is absolutely condemning. And, on the other hand, the conscious eye may continue to complain irascibly of innovations for some time after the unconscious eye has given them its final approval.

In using, and continuing to use, the new typography, Vanity Fair believes that it knows very well what it is doing. In modifying one of the conventions of the new typography by returning to the use of capital letters in titles, it is obeying considerations that outlast any mere ‘revolution in style.’

Three main factors dominate typography: first, appropriateness, as affected by the time, the place and the function of the material; second, attractiveness, ingratiating the eye and so the mind; and finally and most importantly, legibility. The page may look as handsome as you please but if there is to be any authority in words and ideas the page must be read. A title set entirely in small letters is unquestionably more attractive than one beginning with a capital or with every word beginning with a capital, but, at the present time, it is also unquestionably harder to read because the eye of the reader is not yet educated to it. The issue is thus one between attractiveness and legibility, or between form and content, and Vanity Fair, not wishing to undertake a campaign of education, casts its vote by returning to the use of capital letters in titles, to legibility, and to the cause of content above form.

It may be said here that Vanity Fair has always and will always cast its vote in that way. While it has tried to perfect its appearance, it has continued to believe that to refuse to be a Magazine of Opinion is not necessarily to be frivolous. Better things are said in one moment of even-tempered gaiety than in a lifetime of spleen.

The notes on this page are not alone to announce a change in typographic style, an event sufficiently self-evident and hardly worth announcing. They are even more particularly to re-affirm some old pledges of Vanity Fair and to submit to the final tribunal of its readers the credo of present policies. The assumption of its readers’ interest may be naive but Vanity Fair rests in the belief that it is not unwarranted and subscribes itself, your very obedient servant.


[The article is set in ATF Bodoni for the text and Futura for the headline and subhead. The art director, M.F. Agha, was presumably responsible for the no-capitals title experiment. And it was most likely the editorial side of the magazine that put a halt to it.]

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Update: Blue Pencil no. 1 re: Civilité

Gilles Corre of GLC Fonts, in responding to a comment in Blue Pencil no. 1,  has pointed out that his website only shows pictures of his fonts and that information about their background can be found on MyFonts. His 1742 Civilité is derived from a model in Pierre Simon Fournier le jeune’s Modèles des caractères de l’imprimerie et des autres choses nécessaires au dit art nouvellement gravés par Simon-Pierre Fournier le jeune (1742). 

More about Sarah and Enoch

David Shields, Assistant Professor in the Design Division at the University of Texas at Austin and curator of the Rob Roy Kelly American Wood Type Collection, has pointed out that no. 21 in Nicolete Gray’s Chart of Ornamented Typefaces 1800–1900 (in her Nineteenth Century Ornamented Typefaces, rev. ed. 1976) may be the model for the Sarah and Enoch gravestone lettering. No. 21 is from New Specimen of Printing Types from the Fann Street Letter Foundry (London: William Thorowgood, Letter-Founder to his Majesty, late Thorne, 1825). Gray describes it simply as a Tuscan. The key letter in Gray’s sample is the P with its dimpled bowl. However, the O does not match. It would also be nice to see Thorowgood’s S

Gravestone typography part 3

This gravestone for Harriet D. Cross (d. 1840) in the Grove Cemetery is an example of the typographic epitaph I was speaking of earlier. It is not what I had hoped to show since it does not have a Fat Face or an Egyptian but the mix of elements (bold grotesque in relief, light grotesque incised, outlined grotesque in relief, and Tuscan in relief; and the cartouche backgrounds) certainly shows the influence of 19th c. display typography. 

In the Captain David Libby gravestone (posted earlier) also note the distinctive Fat Face 2, Fat Face Italic AE dipthong, and the decorative rule. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

More from Maine

The gravestones in Midcoast Maine reveal some other oddities. 

That of Mary Butman (d. 1848), wife of Samuel Butman, has an odd form of underscore in the abbreviation for Samuel: a short line under the l and below it three dots in increasing size.

That of Peter Hilt (d. 1845) has a similar underscore for the abbreviation of September: a thin short line under the t and below it two dots. 

I have never seen these forms of abbreviations before. Presumably, the same carver was responsible for the Mary Butman stone in the Gordon Cemetery (Searsport) and the Hilt stone in the cemetery on Route 225. 

The joint gravestone of Enoch P. (d. 1811) and Sarah (d. 1804) [last names unknown, but both children when they died and thus likely to have been brother and sister] has a very unusual ornamented letter for their names (in relief) as well as for DIED (incised). Despite the death dates the stone was carved in the 1850s or later since it is marble and not slate. The letter is clearly typographic in origin as a small example of it appears in American Wood Types: 1828–1900 by Rob Roy Kelly on p. 202. Kelly does not identify his source, only indicating that the face (and the others shown alongside it) were popular in the 1850s in France and England—thus supporting the assumption that the stone was carved later than the dates on it. In which country did the face originate? Which American foundries or wood type manufacturers offered it? Where did the stonecutter discover it?

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Gravestone typography continued

Here are a few more examples of the lone decorative DIED from Maine cemeteries. The decorative capitals for John Cochran (which would have been carved in 1850 when his wife died, not in 1839 when he did) and Deacon Job Pendleton have been found on other gravestones. I suspect they are from a typefounder’s or wood type manufacturer’s specimen book, but I have not yet located it.

Dea. Job Pendleton (d. 1847) / unidentified cemetery on Rt. 235
John Cochran (d. 1839) and Mary Cochran (d. 1850) / Grove Cemetery / Belfast, Maine
a peculiar decorative letter for him with blackletter undertones and a simple gothic for her
Sumner Lothrop (d. 1863) / Grove Cemetery / Belfast, Maine
rimmed gothic with shading
Mary Griffin (d. 1845) / Grove Cemetery / Belfast. Maine
Caslon Italian
Capt. David H. Libby (d. 1836) / Grove Cemetery / Belfast, Maine
Caslon Italian in relief

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Gravestone typography

During my vacation in Maine a few weeks I visited as many cemeteries as I could find in the mid-coast region with the aim of finding gravestones from the 18th century that showed evidence of vernacular carving. I failed miserably. The earliest stone I was able to locate was from 1798 and it was in poor condition. But what caught my eye were stones that were laid out and carved typographically. That is, they looked very much like the broadsides and ephemera of their time which was mainly the decades from 1820 to the Civil War. 

I am posting here rubbings I made from several of them of a single word: DIED. On each stone this word was given its own line and always carved in all capitals. The style of capitals of each is inspired by a contemporary typeface. I have not yet identified each of them, though most will look familiar to anyone knowledgeable about 19th century type designs.

The stones (and their general typographic styles) are: 
Rolando Servilius Pendleton (d. 1845) / unidentified cemetery on Route 235
Egyptian Italic
Frances A. Barstow (d. 1846) / Mt. Repose Cemetery / Route 3
Caslon Italian
Isaiah Steavens (d. 1847) / Mt. Repose Cemetery / Route 3
Gothic with shading
(d. 1848) / Mt. Repose Cemetery / Route 3
Chamfered Egyptian
John P. Stowers (d. 1848) / Sandy Point Cemetery
Captain Shepherd Blanchard (d. 1848) / Gordon Cemetery / Searsport, Maine
Fat Face with shading
Mary Butman (d. 1848) / Gordon Cemetery / Searsport, Maine
Josephine Spring (d. 1851) / Mt. Repose Cemetery / Route 3
Egyptian with shading
(d. 185?) / Mt. Repose Cemetery / Route 3
Reverse Italic Egyptian
Charles Gordon (d. 1873) / Gordon Cemetery / Searsport, Maine

Other type styles that appear on these stones are: Fat Face, Reverse Italic Fat Face, Gothic, and Reverse Italic Gothic. The question is: what happened c. 1820 to cause a radical change in gravestone epigraphy in New England?

Questo blog non è morto

When I began this blog I called it a slow blog. But I had no intention of making it this slow, to the point of appearing dead. My PowerMac hard drive died on Friday, March 13th and by the time I got my new iMac up and running (with all the right programs) I was too deep into classes and other projects to keep up with the blog. I had also begun the next Blue Pencil post which has proven much more difficult than planned. Although the book (which shall go unnamed at the moment) is only 258 pages long I am finding that it seems to have one incorrect fact for every correct one. Meanwhile, other books worth posting continue to appear. Tonight I decided to put one of them at the head of the queue and get it posted by the end of next week. Don’t despair. Blue Pencil is staying sharpened.