Page 14 - April 2015
P. 14

Letters to the editor                       London sometime after WW2 and had
                                               become printers as well as bookbinders. I
Evanion coincidence!                           like to think that maybe Henry Evans was
                                               a client of C.E. Gray as they were both in
Dear Editor, I am a very new member of BPS     Kennington and Grays may have printed his
and was delighted when my second copy          posters and leaflets.
of Small Printer dropped through my door.
I find it an excellent journal that certainly      Grays continued in business throughout
reflects my interest and fascination with the  the '60's and into the 70's. The letterpress
craft of letterpress printing. Although new    closed down first but I believe the book-
to the society, I'm not new to printing hav-   binding continued into the 1990's. I passed
ing been a letterpress apprentice 55 years     the building a few years ago and it still
ago but due to circumstances I deviated        proudly bears the name cut in Portland
into fine hand bookbinding and antiquarian     stone above the main door—'De Worde
book conservation, a business from which I     House' a nod to one of the fathers of
retired from a few years ago after a lifetime  letterpress printing in Britain.
of working with paper, print and books.
                                                   As for me, I feel my life has come full
    In the current issue of the BPS journal,   circle. In my 70th year I'm back to letter-
I was particularly drawn to the excellent      press printing on my Adana TP48 and enjoy-
article by Bob Richardson entitled HERE        ing it very much. Thanks for a great read to
TODAY, GONE TOMORROW. Relating the             look forward to every month.
rather sad story of Henry Evans, the vic-
torian magician, his amazing collection of                         Keith Houghton (10774)
printed ephemera and his friendship with                    (Tan y Coed Press, Snowdonia)
the great Houdini. It was when I was study-
ing the images of some of the marvellous
examples reproduced in the journal that I
got an overwhelming feeling of 'Deja Vu'.
Let me explain.

    On most of the reproduced images in the
top right-hand corner is pencilled 'Evans'
and a number. (This I presume is catalogue
numbering of the British Library) I knew I
had seen this name and numbering some-
where before, and very recently. Then it
suddenly dawned on me. The previous day
I had been online doing some research on
the history of the firm that I was originally
apprenticed to and found on the BL website
the image that I enclose. You will see that
at the top right-hand corner the pencilled
name—Evans 7481. Coincidence or what?

    C. E. Gray was the firm I was apprenticed
to. The firm survived both world wars and
eventually moved to Barnes, South-west
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