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The Printing Types of the Doves Press: Their History and Destruction

Carole Cable
The Library Quarterly: Information, Community, Policy
Vol. 44, No. 3 (Jul., 1974), pp. 219-230
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4306410
Page Count: 12
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The Printing Types of the Doves Press: Their History and Destruction
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Abstract

The Doves Press, founded in 1900 in Hammersmith, England, by Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson and Emery Walker, produced during its seventeen years of operation some of the most notable examples of fine typography of the twentieth century. One distinguishing feature of the Doves Press books was the Doves font of type whose creation was primarily the responsibility of Emery Walker. When Walker withdrew from the partnership of the press in 1909, the two partners agreed that Codben-Sanderson should have the use of the type in the printing of the Doves Press publications until his death. Upon his death, the ownership of the types was to pass to Emery Walker, who was then free to use them for any private or commercial printing endeavors which he desired. However, when the press closed in 1917, Cobden-Sanderson announced in the final publication of the press that the Doves Press font of type had been "bequeathed" to the bed of the River Thames. Making use of the "Journals" of Cobden-Sanderson, published by his son Richard in 1926, as well as published letters written to Sydney C. Cockerell by both Cobden-Sanderson and Walker, this article examines the dispute over the ownership of the types. Extensive use is also made of unpublished manuscript material by Emery Walker, as well as documents relating to the legal proceedings. These latter materials are important in the presentation of the complete history of the Doves Press font of type, for Cobden-Sanderson removed all references to Emery Walker in his "Journals" before they were published, and Walker himself revealed little publicly concerning his role in the press.

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