Printing Picture Books in the 19th Century

Throwback Thursday is my favorite day to write for this blog. I love print antiques and print hitory.

Todays post is a video that would put most to sleep – but had me mesmerized.


The gentlemen who created the video found an old Websters Pictorial and set out to recreate it.  Using old hunks of linotype, and a very old printing press, he recreated the booklet to the original glory. His walk through – from start to finish – truly shows how intricate and how slow going the book making process was during thee 19th Century.

“The “Webster’s Project” started in the summer of 1996 before I began my second year studying at the North Bennet Street School in Boston. At my grandmother’s farm in Maryland, under my grandfather’s favorite reading chair, I discovered a tattered 1898 edition of the International Dictionary. I’d always wanted one of these big old Webster’s and I figured it would make a great repair project.”

Ultimately though – the repairs were not enough, and the writer opted to inquire about all the original lead type.  As luck would have it, the company will had it all!  Check out this awesome tutorial on how the book was recreated

The leather wrapped cover, the thumb notches, the individually set letters – what a process!  A little harder than hitting CTRL P, thats for sure.

I sure wish I had the tools at hand to recreate some of these antique works of art.

Full article can be seen HERE

Anyone have any experience recreating an old book? please share!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *