P16510: Reconstruction of a Wooden Common Press

Field Trip

Field Trips


To observe, document, and measure existing wooden printing presses from the period prior to 1800. The information learned on these visits will influence our final design.

Trip #1

Mackenzie Printery and Newspaper Museum, Queenston, ON, Canada

The Louis C. Roy Press:

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Hose assembly:

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The hose is clad on all four sides with iron sheet, and the till is lined with brass.

1X6X1 Cramp Iron Layout:

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This is the late-eighteenth century style of cramp iron, which allows for the elimination of the guide boards found on earlier presses.

Trip #2

Newport Historical Society

The James Franklin Press:

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Hose assembly:

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The press has a bare-wood hose, and an unlined till.

Cap Wingnuts:

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These wingnuts were cut down from their previous height.

Trip #3

The Printing Office of Edes and Gill

Reconstructed Press by Ralph Green:

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Hose assembly:

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The hose in clad in iron, and the till is lined with brass.

Trip #4

Exeter Historical Society

Robert Luist Fowle Press:

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Hose assembly:

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The hose has corners of iron, which extend past the wooden portion of the hose to include the platen hooks. The till is brass-lined only in the corners.

Special Wingnuts:

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This style of wingnut is special to this press, and does not appear on any other presses we are aware of.

Brass Cramp Irons:

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Brass cramp irons are not described in any text sources. In the case of the Fowle Press, one was loose and able to be photographed in detail. There were only eight cramp irons. Later, we observed brass cramp irons on the Dresden Press in Montpelier, in the same arrangement.

Trip #5

Vermont Historical Society

The Dresden Press:

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Hose assembly:

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This hose is very similar to that of the Fowle Press in Exeter. It has all of the same components, but the garter has been replaced. The till is not original.

Toe of the Spindle:

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The toe of the spindle was fully out of the platen cup, and features decorative turning. There was also decorative turning on the Fowle Press spindle.