Victor and Carolyn Hammer papers

Abstract

The Victor and Carolyn Hammer papers collection contains articles and book manuscripts by the prominent printer Victor Hammer, biographical manuscripts written about Victor Hammer after his death, Carolyn Hammer's papers collected for King Library while she was curator of rare books for the University of Kentucky, as well as, the financial and business records for Anvil Press.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Victor and Carolyn Hammer papers
Creator
Hammer, Victor Karl, 1882-1967
Extent
4.5 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Printing -- Kentucky.
Wood-engraving.
Typography.
Private presses -- United States.
Arrangement
The collection is arranged by subject.
Finding Aid Author
Ida Sell
Preferred Citation
1997ms409: [identification item] Victor and Carolyn Hammer papers, 1880-1981, undated, University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Printer and typographer Victor Karl Hammer (1882-1967) was born in Vienna, Austria in 1882. He studied architecture with Camillo Sitte in Vienna (1897-1898) and attended and taught at the Acadamy of Fine Arts Vienna (1898-1908). Hammer designed his first type-face, Hammer Uncial, in 1921, ran a printing press, named Stamperia del Santuccio, in Florence, Italy from 1922-1936, and taught art at the Acadamy of Fine Arts Vienna (1936-1939). While in Vienna, he married Rosl Rossback; they had two children, Veronika and Jacob. Fleeing Nazi Germany in 1939, the Hammers immigrated to the United States and opened a printing press at Wells College, Aurora, New York. In 1948, Hammer became the artist in residence at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky, where he designed the popular type-face American Uncial. Following Rosl's death in 1954, Hammer married Carolyn Reading, a longtime printing apprentice, in 1955. During their marriage, they ran and were involved with multiple presses together, including Hammer's Stamperia del Santuccio, Anvil Press, and the King Library Press. Additionally, the Hammers were frequent correspondants and great friends with spiritualist and monk, Thomas Merton.
Carolyn Reading Hammer (1911-2001) was the University of Kentucky's Curator of Rare Books and the founder of the King Library Press. Hammer earned her undergraduate degree from Transylvania University and her graduate degree in librarianship from Columbia University in 1933. She worked at both the Library of Congress and the Stuart Robinson School before coming to the University of Kentucky Libraries, where she served as both the Head of Acquisitions and the Curator of Rare Books. In 1943 she and Amelia Buckley started the Bur Press, which printed a series titled Kentucky Monographs and calendars with photographs by the Lexington Camera Club. In addition to the Bur Press, Carolyn Hammer also printed under the Anvil Press, Victor Hammer's Stamperia del Santuccio, the High Noon Press, and the King Library Press. She began an apprenticeship with Victor Hammer in 1949 while he served as artist in residence at Transylvania University. She founded the King Library Press in 1956 in the basement of the Margaret I. King Libary and served as its director until her retirement in 1976.
Sources:
The Private Press Tradition in Lexington, Kentucky by Burton Milward From The Kentucky Review, Volume XI, Number 3, Autumn 1992, pp. 5-27. Copyright © 1992 by the University of Kentucky Libraries
Scope and Content
The Victor and Carolyn Hammer papers (dated 1880-1981, undated; 4.5 cubic feet; 10 boxes) contains manuscripts, writings, research, and correspondence of the two prominent printers as well as the business records for the Anvil Press. The papers include manuscripts for Concern for the Art of Civilized Man, Mnemosyne and her Nine Daughters (1963) by Victor Hammer; Victor Hammer: Artist and Craftsman (1977) by English art historian, Sir John Rosenstein; and Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer (1981) compiled by Carolyn Hammer with chapters written by fellow printers. Additionally, the collection contains the illustrations for Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer. Correspondence between Carolyn Hammer and other librarians with printing professionals about exhibitions at the King Library is included in the collection. Finally, as founding members of Anvil Press, the Hammer papers include the financial records for the press as well as records on investors and the materials used by the press.

Restrictions on Access and Use

Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Access Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
Use Restrictions
The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.

Contents of the Collection

Victor Hammer writings, 1933-1963, undated

The Victor Hammer writings series includes manuscripts of articles and the book Victor Hammer wrote on art theory from 1933 until 1963. The two earliest articles, Kultur und Politik and Eine schule fur Für Freie und Strenge Künste are in German. Most of his writings are in the form of a dialectic conversation between a critic and an experienced craftsman. Many different edited versions of Mnemosyne and her Nine Daughters, which was later called Concern for the Art of Civilized Man, are included in the series. Hammer worked on the manuscript for many years until it was finally published by his Stamperia del Santuccio press in Lexington in 1963.

Kultur und Politik: manuscript, undated

  • Box 1, folder 1
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Eine schule fur Für Freie und Strenge Künste, manuscript, 1933-1935

  • Box 1, folder 2
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Manuscript for autobiography published in Graz Oesterr. Blaetter by Victor Hammer, 1937

  • Box 1, folder 3
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Dialogue on the Uncial Letter (with E.A. Lowe): manuscript, circa 1945

  • Box 1, folder 4
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A Unique Plan: manuscript and notes, circay 1947

  • Box 1, folder 5
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Industrial Methods of Work and Socialism: manuscript later printed in the Catholic Art Quarterly, 1949

  • Box 1, folder 6
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Politics of Freedom/Dialogue: handwritten notes, undated

  • Box 1, folder 7
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A Dialogue About Architecture and Other Topics Akin to it Between a Young Critic and an Old Craftsman: first uncorrected draft, 1950 August

  • Box 1, folder 8
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A Dialogue About Architecture and Other Topics Akin to it Between a Young Critic and an Old Craftsman: second draft, 1950 October 29-November 11

  • Box 1, folder 9
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Notes on architectural definitions, undated

  • Box 1, folder 10
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John VIII: notes taken from this for some of Hammer's other writings, undated

  • Box 1, folder 11
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Fragments: original typescript on which D. Jindain and J(?) collaboration, 1951

  • Box 1, folder 12
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Proof sheets for Three Fragments, circa 1951

  • Box 1, folder 13
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The Theory of Art as Pure Visibility: handwritten manuscript, undated

  • Box 1, folder 14
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Dialogue: handwritten manuscript, undated

  • Box 2, folder 1-2
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Dialogue: early manuscript, undated

  • Box 2, folder 3
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Mnemosyne And Her Nine Daughters: corrected by Ulrich Middeldorf, circa 1950

  • Box 2, folder 4
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: typescript with editing notes, undated

  • Box 2, folder 5
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: Chapters I and II, with editing notes, undated

  • Box 2, folder 6
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: Chapters I-III, with editing notes, undated

  • Box 2, folder 7
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: editing notes by Paul Standard, 1953

  • Box 2, folder 8
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Memory and her Nine Daughters, a Platonic Dialogue in four chapters: corrections by Th. Stoop, undated

  • Box 2, folder 9
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: corrections by T. Wilkinson, undated

  • Box 2, folder 10
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: corrections by unknown, 1952 January 7

  • Box 3, folder 1
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Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters: typescript, undated

  • Box 3, folder 2
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Memory and Her Nine Daughters: Chapters I and II, with notes, copy to be published, 1952 March 20

  • Box 3, folder 3
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Mnemosyne and her Nine Daughters: eight pages of final printed version, circa 1956

  • Box 3, folder 4
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Triptychon of Mnemosyne and Her Nine Daughters, the Muses: typscript with notes, undated

  • Box 3, folder 5
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Concern for the Art of Civilized Man: proof pages, circa 1962

  • Box 3, folder 6
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Concern for the Art of Civilized Man: early draft, undated

  • Box 3, folder 7
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Concern for the Art of Civilized Man: draft with editing notes, undated

  • Box 3, folder 8
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Concern for Art of Civilized Man: handwritten and typed draft with editing notes, undated

  • Box 3, folder 9
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Digressions on the Roman Letters: manuscript later printed in Chapters on Writing and Printing, 1963

  • Box 3, folder 10
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Victor Hammer: Artist and Craftsman , 1974-1977, undated

The Victor Hammer: Artist and Craftsman series contains the manuscript of a biography of Victor Hammer. The author, John Rothenstein (1901-1992), was an English art historian. He wrote a biography about Victor Hammer which was published by Oak Knoll Press in 1978. During the time Rothenstein was writing the Hammer biography he sent his manuscripts to Carolyn Hammer for editing. Her copies of the manuscripts are included in this series.

First retyped first draft with notes, undated

  • Box 3, folder 11
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Retyped first draft, 1974 April

  • Box 3, folder 12
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Second draft with author's corrections, 1974 May

  • Box 3, folder 13
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Final Draft: 63 page manuscript, 1974 December

  • Box 4, folder 1
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Two copies of eleven pages of the edited draft, 1975 April

  • Box 4, folder 2
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Second draft with editing notes by Kolbshein, 1975 May

  • Box 4, folder 3
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Last draft with Carolyn Reading Hammer corrections: handwritten manuscripts and list of sources and plates, 1976 September 14

  • Box 4, folder 4
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Copy of uncorrected last draft and typed list of sources and plates, 1976 September

  • Box 4, folder 5
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Copy of last draft corrected by the author and a short note to Carolyn Reading Hammer, 1976 September

  • Box 4, folder 6
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Carolyn Reading Hammer's copy with author's corrections noted, 1976 September

  • Box 4, folder 7
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Copy of penultimate draft sent to Claude Trapp for criticism: contains short editing notes by Trapp, 1976 December

  • Box 4, folder 8
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Complete xerox copy of draft, author's corrected copy, 1976 December-1977 January

  • Box 4, folder 9
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Original final draft, 1977 December

  • Box 4, folder 10
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Last typed manuscript, 1977 April 1

  • Box 4, folder 11
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Carolyn's Reading Hammer's copy with corrections, 1977 April 13

  • Box 5, folder 1
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Xerox copy of proof sent to Mardesteig: first printed proof, copy of illustrations, 1977 June

  • Box 5, folder 2
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Chapter I Mezzotints by Middeldorf: first and second drafts and final copy with xerox of plates, undated

  • Box 5, folder 3
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Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer , 1930, 1980-1981, undated

The Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer series contains manuscripts of a work compiled by Carolyn Hammer to be a companion volume to the Victor Hammer biography John Rothenstein wrote and was published in 1978. Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer concerns the artist's mezzotints and other engravings, his uncial type-faces, and the books he printed on his hand-presses in Europe and America. Each of the contributors, contemporaries of Victor Hammer, presents a different perspective on Hammer's aims and accomplishments. The contributors include Carolyn Hammer, Rudolf Koch, Ulrich Middeldorf, R. Hunter Middleton, Hermann Zapf, W. Gay Reading, Jr., Paul Holbrook, and David Farrell. Carolyn Hammer's copies of the drafts of each chapter, as well as, the illustrations of the plates for the volume are included in this series.

Wer ist Victor Hammer? by Rudolf Koch: photcopy of handwritten manuscript, 1930

  • Box 5, folder 4
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Wer ist Victor Hammer?: copy in german by Rudolf Koch, preliminary pages, circa 1980

  • Box 5, folder 5
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Preliminary pages including translation to English Who is Victor Hammer?, undated

  • Box 5, folder 6
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Chapter I, Mezzotints By Middeldorf: first and second drafts, final copy, undated

  • Box 5, folder 7
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Chapter I, Mezzotints by Middeldorf, 29 illustrations, undated

  • Box 5, folder 8
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Chapter I, Mezzotints plates for 28 illustrations, undated

  • Box 5, folder 9
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Chapter II, engravings and woodcuts with notes by Carolyn Hammer, undated

  • Box 5, folder 10
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Chapter II, engravings and woodcuts and 26 plates, undated

  • Box 5, folder 11
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Chapter engravings and woodcuts: Carolyn's copy of the first draft and 26 illustrations, undated

  • Box 5, folder 12
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Chapter III, illustrations: 1-27, undated

  • Box 5, folder 13
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Chapter III, illustrations: 28-52, undated

  • Box 6, folder 1
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Chapter III, inscriptions and symbola, 51 illustrations: all drafts and xerox copies of all illustrations, undated

  • Box 6, folder 2
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Chapter III, inscriptions and symbols, undated

  • Box 6, folder 3
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Chapter IV, Uncial type-faces: Forward by R. Hunter Middleton/ A Master of Punch Cutting by Hermann Zapf: manuscript and final copy/ Documentation of Hammer Types by W. Gay Reading/ negatives for illustrations, undated

  • Box 6, folder 4
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Chapter IV, Uncial type-faces figures 1-21, undated

  • Box 6, folder 5
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Chapter IV, Uncial type-faces figures for plates, undated

  • Box 6, folder 6
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Chapter IV, Uncial types: manuscript with editing notes, undated

  • Box 6, folder 7
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Chapter V, Four Presses: A Bibliography: second copy, undated

  • Box 6, folder 8
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Chapter V, Four Presses: A Bibliography by Paul Holbrook with notes by Carolyn Reading Hammer/ index, undated

  • Box 6, folder 9
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Chapter VI: corrected bibliography by David Farrell, 1981 January 7

  • Box 7, folder 1
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Chapter VI, A Hammer Bibliography by David Farrell/ End Pages: biographical notes, undated

  • Box 7, folder 2
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Text for Prospectus, proofs and final copies, undated

  • Box 7, folder 3
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Four sets of page proofs, undated

  • Box 7, folder 4
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Galley pages from the Anvil Press, undated

  • Box 7, folder 5
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Chapter IV-VI, first printed drafts, undated

  • Box 7, folder 6
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Second xerox copy of galley pages, 1981 June

  • Box 7, folder 7
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Chapter V, printed drafts, undated

  • Box 8, folder 1
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Anvil Press program for the publication of Victor Hammer: Artist and Printer, 1981

  • Box 8, folder 2
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Related printmakers correspondence and exhibitions, 1948-1969

The Related Printmakers correspondence and exhibitions series includes the correspondence between University of Kentucky librarians and printmakers whose works are included in the library's special collections or were on display in an exhibit in the library. Two of the printers, Joe Graves and Paul Standard, were contemporaries of Victor Hammer once he settled in Lexington, Kentucky. Amelia King Buckley was a close friend to Carolyn Reading Hammer. Ms. Buckley and Mrs. Hammer printed together at the Bur Press in the 1940s. Reynolds Stone, an English artist who designed wood cut engravings, created works that were on display in the King Library in the 1950s. Correspondence in the series addresses the desire of the librarians at King to maintain the Reynolds Stone exhibit, as well as, collect more works by Victor Hammer.

Correspondence with Joe Graves about Graves Press, 1948-1954

  • Box 8, folder 3
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Correspondence and book sleeves from the Reynolds Stone exhibit at King Library, 1951-1959

  • Box 8, folder 4
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Correspondence relating to King Library Victor Hammer exhibition and Hammer fund (money donated to purchase Hammer works), 1953-1963

  • Box 8, folder 5
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Correspondence from Paul Standard to Lawrence Thompson and review of Wolfgang Fuggers, 1955-1959

  • Box 8, folder 6
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Correspondence from Amelia Buckley to King Library and calligraphy examples, 1961-1969

  • Box 8, folder 7
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Carolyn Hammer materials, 1880, 1920-1974

The Carolyn Hammer materials series includes mostly correspondence between University of Kentucky librarians, Mrs. Hammond Dugan, Mrs. Hill Shine, Lawrence Thompson and Carolyn Hammer and artists or manufacturers in the printmaking profession. The series also includes some broadsides advertisments relating to printing and typography from the late nineteenth centrury.

Printmaking and typography advertisements, circa 1880

  • Box 8, folder 8
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Stuart Guthrie diary, typed copy, 1920

  • Box 8, folder 9
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Correspondence from George K. Graves about donations to University of Kentucky library, 1941 October 25-1943 May 17

  • Box 8, folder 10
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Examples of wood block cuts by Frederick Warde, Bodoni, Switzerland and correspondence from Warde to Mrs. William Hand about rare book collection, 1926 April

  • Box 8, folder 11
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Note card inventory of works by Burr Press and Carolyn Hammer, 1943-1954

  • Box 8, folder 12
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Correspondence between Janet Winter and Victor Hammer, 1946-1942

  • Box 9, folder 1
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Correspondence between Mrs. Hammond Dugan and Joseph C. Robert, 1947 September 10-1959 March 10

  • Box 9, folder 2
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Correspondence between Gebrüder Scholl, Zürich, and Carolyn Reading (Hammer) about Swiss pear wood, 1949 August 27-November 7

  • Box 9, folder 3
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Correspondence between T.N. Lawrence and Son, Lon, manufacturers of Engraver's Boxwood Blocks, and Carolyn Reading (Hammer), 1951 September 13-1954 March 9

  • Box 9, folder 4
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Correspondence between Harry S. Rossiter, typographer, and Mrs. Hammond Dugan, 1953 May-1956 May

  • Box 9, folder 5
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Articles about Anvil Press, Carolyn Reading (Hammer) correspondence about Anvil Press , 1953 October 26-1955 December 30

  • Box 9, folder 6
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Correspondence and receipts from paper and printing companies to Carolyn Reading (Hammer), 1952 January 15-1954 March 16

  • Box 9, folder 7
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Personal correspondence from Frank A. Pattie to Mrs. Hammond Dugan and Mrs. Shine, 1954 April 8-1967 January 23

  • Box 9, folder 8
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Correspondence from Beatrice Warde to Mrs. Hammond Dugan about linotype, 1955 April-1963 October

  • Box 9, folder 9
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Classical Antiquity and the Roman Type by Julius Rodenberg and translated by Lawrence Thompson and correspondence to Thompson about translation, 1958-1966

  • Box 9, folder 10
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William (King) Solomon by Burton Milward with editing notes, circa 1959

  • Box 9, folder 11
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Correspondence between Mrs. Hammond Dugan and the Mardersleig family of Verona, famous printers, 1959 July 31-1961 May 23

  • Box 9, folder 12
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Correspondence between Mrs. Hammond Dugan, and Stanbrook Abbey Press, 1960 March-1965 January 22

  • Box 9, folder 13
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Correspondence between Mrs. Hammond Dugan and Fritz Kredel, 1960 December-1965 June 20

  • Box 9, folder 14
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Correspondence between Mrs. Hill Shine and Joseph Ishill, author, 1962 March-1963 April

  • Box 9, folder 15
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Correspondence from Rollo Silver to Mrs. Hill Shine and Lawrence Thompson, 1964 November-1966 April

  • Box 9, folder 16
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Correspondence from Tom Sutherland, Hartford, Kentucky to Mrs. Hill Shine about typeface, 1965 November 12

  • Box 9, folder 17
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Correspondence from Klaus Wrage to Lawrence Thompson about woodcut engravings, 1969 January 1

  • Box 9, folder 18
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Correspondence between Walter G. Langlois and Carolyn Hammer about exhibit, 1969 September-November

  • Box 9, folder 19
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Correspondence from Wendell Berry to Carolyn Reading Hammer and copy of Civilizing the Cumberlands by Berry, 1969 September 16

  • Box 9, folder 20
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Correspondence from Clinton Harbinger to Carolyn Hammer about Thomas Jefferson quote, 1974 June 9

  • Box 9, folder 21
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The Seafarer published by King Library Press, materials and photographs from publication party, 1975

  • Box 9, folder 22
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First Fragments by unknown, corrected by DuStoop, correspondence on art theory from unknown, 1977

  • Box 9, folder 23
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Anvil Press, 1952-1979

The Anvil Press papers series includes the financial and business records for the publishers from 1952 until 1981. Anvil Press was founded in 1952 by Joseph Graves and Carolyn Hammer in Lexington, Kentucky. In the beginning Jacob Hammer, Victor Hammer's son, served as Anvil Press' pressman. In this series are Anvil Press' bank statements. Also are receipts and returned checks showing the costs and profits of Anvil Press. There are lists of subscribers to the press' works as well as lists of investors.

Folio with daily record, financial investors' contact information, printing materials inventory, 1952 October-1960 May

  • Box 10, folder 1
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Bank statements, 1953 January-1962 April 25

  • Box 10, folder 2
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Bank loan papers and list of subscribers, investors, 1953 January-1963 February

  • Box 10, folder 3
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Notecards with inventory, 1954-1956

  • Box 10, folder 4
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Returned checks, 1954 October 1-1979 January 29

  • Box 10, folder 5
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Financial records and receipts, 1955-1979

  • Box 10, folder 6
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Bank statements, 1961 April 10-1969 November 29

  • Box 10, folder 7
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Bank statements, 1970 February 27-1975 June 30

  • Box 10, folder 8
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Shadrach accounts payable, 1978 April 23

  • Box 10, folder 9
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