Excerpts are from Leaves from the Pie Tree,an autobiographical account of Jim Rimmer’s life with type. This book was printed by Jim Rimmer at Pie Tree Press, 2006 and is available at Wessel & Lieberman.
Finding his calling:
When Grandfather heard I was not too hot on the idea of becoming an apprentice compositor he called for me to come and see him. I arrived at the Duke Street house and found Grandfather in the backyard, hoeing potatoes. He propped the hoe in the crotch of the plum tree. In the cool green of his garden, he tamped his old briar, took a draw and started in his gentle voice: I hear you want to go back to school. Now that is a fine thing, to have an education behind you, but there are different ways to get educated; and they are all good education. You have a fine opportunity to have a trade. Printing is an old and respected craft. There is art in printing. You are artistic; you will have a chance to use it. At one time printers were the only people aside from nobility who were allowed to carry a sword. He took a pause to relight his gurgling pipe, and midst the perfume of the rhubarb and loganberries he continued: and if yer don’t take the job I’ll kick yer little arse all the way up Duke Street! I accepted my Grandfather’s offer on the spot. My fated collision with printing has been quite plainly one of the greatest blessings in a charmed life. I can’t think what direction life would have taken had my father and grandfather not interceded in my desire to attend formal art classes. I can’t place a value on what six years of apprenticeship training gave me, particularly the typefounding portion of it.
Things were looking bad before Jasper showed up to help repair our Linotronic 560. About one hour after our Rochester-based (adult) service technician did his routine maintenance this morning, our imagesetter broke down for the first time in its two year stint at Boxcar Press. Coincidence? Bad timing? No matter, Jasper was still in Syracuse to help his dad and Anthony disassemble and reassemble the machine. We were back up and running before bed-time. And yes, Jasper is wearing his favorite t-shirt. If anyone is in need of imagesetter repair, Jasper’s rates are 30 blueberries/hour plus travel expenses (Cheerios).
Flurry (a new online journal about letterpress printers) needs you. In particular, Flurry needs your press moving stories. And not just that time when you hired riggers and everything went really smoothly. Post a comment telling us (in 50 words or less) what crazy things your love for letterpress has caused you to do with really heavy machinery (or, if you’re shy, email us (email@example.com). How far were you willing to go for your cast iron beauty? Madness, adrenaline, photos, reenactments, and adventure are all encouraged. The best story will win the right of first refusal for Harold Kyle’s *free* 2-ton Miehle Vertical press. This press has brand new rollers, as well as typical rust and dirt issues as you’d expect with any mid-century press. It’s guaranteed to provide you with an exciting press moving story all over again! You’ll also receive fame and a Boxcar letterpress t-shirt featuring your choice of press (Vandercook; Windmill; C&P; or Sigwalt). And we’ll feature the best stories in an upcoming article on Flurry. Post or email your best in 50 words or less by August 20.
We’ve just received the Co-op America’s Business Seal of Approval. Hooray! The businesses that are part of this organization are truly cutting-edge green, and we’re proud that our care for the environment and our eco-way of business has allowed us to be a part of this cool organization. We were impressed by the lengthy and thoughtful application process that really inspired us to become more green (for instance — we’re working on developing some kind of screening process for vendors, with the goal of working with companies that have a social & environmental consciousness too). From Co-Op America: “Green businesses operate in ways that solve, rather than cause, both environmental and social problems. These businesses adopt principles, policies, and practices that improve the quality of life for their customers, their employees, communities, and the environment.” Our thoughts exactly.
Designed by James Grieshaber. Offset flood of color on front, plus 2 color letterpress. Back is 1C letterpress.
Flurryis a new online journal that hopes to bring together the fine press and commercial letterpress world with stories about what we printers all love: the letterpress. These coasters were given away at TypeCon 2008. (head model credit: Harold Kyle)
Our office manager extraordinaire Carrie Reagan was featured in the lead story on Channel 5 news yesterday on the greatness of local food . It’s a gripping story filled with carrots, cabbage basil, Boxcar Press t-shirts, our friends at the local organic Grindstone Farm….and Carrie speaks eloquently to the beauty of buying local & organic, and knowing what ground your food comes from.
Erin from Sunlit Letterpress in Vancouver (and also creator of the addictive Adventures in Letterpress blog) dropped us a note to say she’s in a fabulous article in the July/August How Magazine.
Congratulations, Erin — you make letterpress proud. Check out photos of the article on Erin’s blog, or see How’s web site. Erin prints with a Boxcar Base & uses Boxcar for her plate processing too.
Well, it sure is exciting to be in the paper. Check out the story about us in Syracuse’s Post Standard.