Guild of Book Workers Newsletter
Number 101
August 1995


California Binder Victim of Arson

The bindery of Ann Thornton, binder and restorer in Los Olivos, Calif., was among the businesses in a shopping mall that were set on fire recently. Firefighters were able to rescue many of the books in the bindery but there was extensive water damage to books, paper and other supplies, and to the equipment, much of which is now rusty. Although Ms. Thornton was not a member of any bookbinding group, Hand Bookbinder and GBW member Charles Schermerhorn, in Lompoc, CA, called for help from Bay Area binders and book arts groups. Many phone calls were made and John DeMerritt, president of the Hand Bookbinders of California, will be sending a sheaf of checks to Los Olivos to help with restoring the bindery. Help and advice for saving the water-soaked books is being given, and, Ann reports that although she cannot return to doing business in the same way, or in the same place, she is starting over in a friends garage. She had not thought, she said, that it was necessary to join any group but she is ready now to join both the Guild of Book Workers and the Hand Bookbinders. Many of the contributors were also GBW members. Ms. Thornton, unfortunately, had no insurance, as so many of us do not. Karen Crisallis report in this issue on the cost and difficulty of obtaining insurance for small binderies makes it clear wy self-employed binders are so poorly covered. Inexpensive health insurance may not be possible to find, but it may be possible to find a solution to the problem of liability and fire insurance.

Oak Knoll Fest 1995 Fine Press Fair

This years Fair is scheduled for Saturday, October 7 in New Castle, Delaware. Ian Mortimer, from I. M. Imprimit in England, will give a talk Saturday morning about his book "Ornamented Types", recent winner of the Italian Felice Feliciano Award for Book Design.

The Fair itself opens in the afternoon with a large number of British and American private presses exhibiting their work. There will be a separate exhibition at Oak Knoll Books showing the bookbinding process, courtesy of Logan-Campbell Bindery, and printing demonstrations. Oak Knoll will offer a 20% off sale of its own books. For more details and information, call Esther C. Fan, Publicity and Public Relations, at (302)328-7232, FAX (302)328-7274.

Southern California Chapter of APHA Forming

In March a number of interested people gathered to handle the "details" of establishing a southern California chapter of APHA. A second organizational meeting was held June 3 in Mission Hills, CA. Anyone interested can call Regis Graden, Nut Quad Press, 818/361-4004.

Conservation Awards Announced

Ellen Chin received the Gaylord Conservation Collections Award which supports professional development in the conservation of books, papers and photographs. Ms. Chin, New York City Municipal Archives, plans to use the Gaylord Award to attend the International Course on Paper Conservation sponsored by the International Centre for the Study of Preservation and the Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM). She was the only US conservator selected to participate in the two-month program on the chemistry of paper and techniques for its conservation. Her training at the Centre will enable the New York City Municipal Archives to expand treatment options for its records, which range from colonial documents to nineteenth century photographs and the individual drawings for Central Park and the Brooklyn Bridge.

The first University Products award for distinguished achievement in the field of conservation was awarded to Arthur Beale, of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "From his involvement in many organizations such as IMS, NIC, AIC, and the Getty Conservation Institute to his key role in the development of advanced level conservation training programs at both Harvard and at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Beale works tirelessly to develop and maintain a national profile for the field of conservation." (AIC press release)

Elisabeth Cornu accepted, on June 9, the Sheldon and Caroline Keck Award for sustained record of excellence in the education and training of conservation professionals. Ms. Cornu is head of the Objects Conservation Facility of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

New Managing Director at Hand Papermaking

Tom Bannister has been selected as the new Managing Director by Hand Papermaking, Inc., publisher of Hand Papermaking magazine and the Hand Papermaking Newsletter. Filling the first full-time staff position in the non-profit organizations ten-year history, Tom will work closely with Michael Durgin, co-founder and executive editor.

Tom runs Page Two, Inc., which publishes the bi-monthly Book Arts Classified and the annual Book Arts Directory, which he will continue. In addition to his familiarity with publications, he brings extensive book arts experience to the position: as a researcher of typesetting and teacher of typography; as a letterpress printer; as a volunteer with Pyramid Atlantic, Oregon Book Arts Guild, Oregon School of Arts & Crafts, and the Valley Art Center (near Portland, OR); and as a commercial and graphic artist.

Tom can be reached at the organizations main mail address: Hand Papermaking, PO Box 77027, Washington, DC 20013-7027 or, via email at "".

Carl Hertzog Award for Excellence in Book Design Announced

The Library at the University of Texas El Paso announces the fifth annual competition for the Carl Hertzog Book Design Award. Book designers, printers and publishers throughout the United States are encouraged to submit books printed in 1994 or 1995. Sponsored by the Associates of the University Library, this national award honors the lifework of one of this countrys most accomplished book designers and printers, the late Carl Hertzog (1902 - 1984), "The Printer at the Pass".

The competition is open to presses and publishers of all types and sizes. The winner and runners-up will receive national recognition and will be exhibited in the University Library of the University of Texas at El Paso for two months after the announcement of the award on February 11, 1996.

The winner will receive a $1000 cash award, a framed certificate, and a specially struck bronze medal designed by Hertzogs long time associate and El Paso artist, Tom Lea.

By creating and sponsoring the Hertzog Award the Associates of the University Library endeavor to underscore the importance of fine printing as an art, to encourage work by new and established artisans, and to recognize outstanding accomplishments in the field.

For an entry form with competition guidelines, please contact UTEP University Librarian, Patricia Larsen at 915/747-5683. Deadline: October 1, 1995.

Holliston Celebrates 100th Anniversary

Holliston, manufacturer of book covering materials, celebrated its 100th anniversary of service to the publishing industry withan open house on April 26 for the book manufacturing and publishing community at Manhattans Marriott Marquis.

The creation of a special commemorative book, "Holliston 1895 - 1995: The First Hundred Years", was commissioned for the event. It was hand-bound by Markey and Asplund, a New England book binder who has been a Holliston customer for over 60 years. The book shows contemporary Holliston materials in a traditional style, weighs 74 lbs. [!], and features Holliston materials including Genuine Cowhide Maroon Morocco, Lexohyde Dark Blue Goat and Kingston Natural Buff.

Following the party, it was shipped to Kingsport, Tenn. (home of Holliston) for display at the Tri-City Airport.