Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947

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Frederic William Goudy was an American type designer. After a career in real estate, he began his career as a type designer at 40 and created over 120 type styles including University of California Oldstyle, exclusively for the University of California Press, and Goudy Old Style. Goudy founded the Village Press with Will H. Ransom and was the Art Director for the Lanston Monotype Machine Company from 1920 until his death in 1947.

From the description of Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1925-1971. (University of California, Los Angeles). WorldCat record id: 505860987

Frederic Goudy was one of the foremost American type designers; his fonts include Copperplate Gothic, Kennerley, and Goudy Old Style. The Typophiles is a not-for-profit educational association that encourages the appreciation and production of fine typography and bookmaking.

From the description of The Typophiles : their book, 1934-1942. (University of Minnesota, Minneapolis). WorldCat record id: 234362048

Frederic W. Goudy, world renowned type designer, was born March 8, 1865, in Bloomington, Illinois.

From the description of Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1922-1969 (bulk 1930-1950). (University of Delaware Library). WorldCat record id: 657754319

Frederic William Goudy is celebrated as one of the finest and most prolific type designers in history. In 1905, Goudy established his first press, which he moved to New York City the next year. His wife, Bertha M. Sprinks Goudy, acted as typesetter. Kennerley, Deepdene, Garamont, and Forum are a few of his more than 100 typefaces. About seventy-five of his designs were destroyed when his plant burned down in 1939.

From the description of The craft of the printer : manuscript, [1900-1947?] (Princeton University Library). WorldCat record id: 213343274

Printer, type designer and typefounder.

From the description of Frederic W. Goudy typographical collection, 1915-1938. (Scottsdale Public Library). WorldCat record id: 28127325

From the description of Letters : Marlborough, N.Y., to Mary Alexander, Chicago, Ill., 1942 July 30-1943 Dec. 10. (Newberry Library). WorldCat record id: 36107435

From the description of Original drawing for an unnamed type design, designated no. 31A, [1917]. (Newberry Library). WorldCat record id: 38016161

American type designer and graphic designer.

From the description of Frederic Goudy collection, 1933-1978. (Mclean County Historical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 276876248

Frederic W. Goudy, world renowned type designer, was born March 8, 1865, in Bloomington, Illinois.

Raised in the small prairie town of Shelbyville, Illinois, in his youth Goudy worked as the high school janitor and as an assistant to Shelbyville’s leading paperhanger. During this time, guided by an old worn copy of a Bruce Foundry specimen book, Goudy cut his first type face from a roll of flowered wall paper.

Graduating from Shelbyville High School in 1883, Goudy became a bookkeeper. When his father was appointed Federal probate judge in Hyde County in the frontier territory of South Dakota, Goudy worked as a clerk and bookkeeper in his father’s real estate office. He continued bookkeeping after he moved to Minnesota in 1887 and later moved on to Chicago to work as a clerk in a bookstore. While examining the books he sold, he determined that they were not printed as well as they might be. He began to read every available book on typography and made visits to veteran printers for a hands-on education.

In 1895, with Lauren C. Hooper, a Chicago English instructor, Goudy established the Camelot Press and for a time printed a magazine called Chapbook. Due to financial difficulties, the magazine and the press lasted less than a year. Mr. Goudy resumed working as a bookkeeper, and in 1897 married a fellow bookkeeper, Miss Bertha M. Sprinks. Goudy continued in a variety of jobs, but on the side he designed and sold his first alphabet of letters to the Dickinson Type Foundry for $10, which proved to be a good investment since the type, known as Camelot, remains popular today. In 1903 Mr. Goudy acquired a partner, $300 in capital, 150 pounds of type, and he set up the Village Press in Park Ridge, Illinois. An essay by William Morris was the first book he printed. The press was moved a number of times, from Illinois to Hingham, Massachusetts, to New York City. Mrs. Goudy eventually took the partner’s place and learned to set type by hand. By the time of her death in 1935 she was an expert typesetter.

The Goudys faced continual financial difficulties even though Goudy won the bronze medal given at the St. Louis World’s Fair for book printing in 1904. Fire destroyed the Parker Building and the Village Press in 1908. The Village Press was rebuilt in Forest Hills, Queens, on Deepdene Road where it remained until 1924, when Goudy moved it to Marlboro, New York. While at Forest Hills, Goudy earned his world-wide reputation as a type designer. During this period he sold eight new type faces to the famous Caslon Foundry in England. He also designed two of his greatest types for Mitchell Kennerley: Kennerley and Forum Title. The increase in advertising during the early twentieth century provided much business for Goudy. He sold type faces to such firms as the National Biscuit Company and the Procter and Gamble Manufacturing Company. In 1920 Mr. Goudy became art director for the Lanston Monotype Company. After moving to Marlboro, the Village Press was established in an old mill built in 1790 near the waterfall of Jew’s Creek and his home, named Deepdene. Here the Goudy family, including their son, Frederic T. Goudy, worked in the manner of the artisan families of the sixteenth century.

A fire in 1939 completely destroyed the Village Press for a second time, with the incalculable loss of original designs of a number of type faces, among them, Medieval, Tory, Village Text, and Bertham. Goudy did not try to re-establish the press but did continue designing type faces. In 1940, on his seventy-fifth birthday, he was appointed a lecturer in type design at the school of journalism at Syracuse University. Goudy won a number of honors for his fine books, including the gold medal of the American Institute of Graphic Arts, the Friedsam gold medal of the Architectural League of New York, and the medal of honor of the Ulster-Irish Society of New York. Goudy was the author of a number of books, including: Elements of Lettering, The Alphabet, Capitals From the Trajan Column, and Typologia . Mr. Goudy was a member of the Grolier Club, Typophiles, and the Stowaways Club of New York.

MacKay, Milton. Glorifier of the Alphabet. Press of The Good Mountain, n.d. Reprinted from The New Yorker, January 14, 1933. Page Proofs for the New York Herald Tribune obituary. n.d. See Box 3, F25.

From the guide to the Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1922–1969, 1930–1950, (University of Delaware Library - Special Collections)

Biography

Frederic William Goudy was an American type designer. After a career in real estate, he began his career as a type designer at 40 and created over 120 type styles including University of California Oldstyle, exclusively for the University of California Press, and Goudy Old Style. Goudy founded the Village Press with Will H. Ransom and was the Art Director for the Lanston Monotype Machine Company from 1920 until his death in 1947.

From the guide to the Frederic W. Goudy Collection, 1925-1971, (University of California, Los Angeles. William Andrews Clark Memorial Library)

Printer, type designer, and typefounder Frederic W. Goudy (1865-1947) designed more than 100 alphabets of letters for printing types. His impact on American printing has been as an artist and a craftsman. Many of his typeface designs were created for such major firms as Lanston Monotype Machine Company, where Goudy served as art director from 1920 to 1940.

Goudy established the Camelot Press in Chicago in 1895 but soon sold out his share. In 1903 he set up the Village Press, a hand-craftsman’s enterprise, in his barn in Park Ridge, Illinois. Goudy settled the press in Marlborough, New York in 1923. His property, called Deepdene included a colonial house and an old mill that he made into the home of the Village Press and Village Letter Foundry.

From the guide to the Frederic W. Goudy Typographical Collection, 1915-1938, (Arizona State University Libraries Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn McArthur, Richard N. The Goudy memorial, 1955. University of Georgia, University of Georgia, Main Library
referencedIn Charles Alexander Nelson papers, 1850s-1930s New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Frederic W. Goudy typographical collection, 1915-1938. Arizona State University Libraries
referencedIn Grabhorn Press records, 1917-1973 Bancroft Library
creatorOf Cary, Melbert Brinckerhoff, 1892-1941,. Melbert B. Cary, Jr. collection of Goudyana, ca. 1929-1941. Grolier Club
creatorOf Frederic W. Goudy Typographical Collection, 1915-1938 Arizona State University Libraries Special Collections
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1925-1971. University of California, Los Angeles
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1922-1969 (bulk 1930-1950). University of Delaware Library, Hugh M Morris Library
referencedIn David M. Norton Collection on Frederic W. Goudy, 1933-1984 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
creatorOf Grabhorn Press. Grabhorn Press records, 1917-1973. UC Berkeley Libraries
referencedIn Thomas Bird Mosher papers, 1890-1939 (inclusive) 1895-1924 (bulk). Houghton Library
referencedIn Blos, Joan W. Papers of the Melcher family [manuscript] 1785-1987. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Arthur S. Allen - Commercial Typography, ca.1900-1940. Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library,
creatorOf Chappell, Warren. Papers of Warren Chappell. 1897-1985. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Press of the Woolly Whale. Visitors' book, 1928-1941. RIT Library, Wallace Library
referencedIn Press of the Woolly Whale. Press of the Woolly Whale collection, 1928-1972 (inclusive), 1928-1941 (bulk) RIT Library, Wallace Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. The craft of the printer : manuscript, [1900-1947?] Princeton University Library
referencedIn Leslie A. Marchand papers, 1940-1977 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Goudy Society, Inc. Goudy Society records, 1965-1990. RIT Library, Wallace Library
referencedIn Grolier Club. Publications Committee. Records of the Committee on Publications, 1884-1983. Grolier Club
referencedIn Hornung, Clarence Pearson. Clarence Pearson Hornung papers, 1792-1990 (bulk 1920-1990). Yale University Library
referencedIn Allen, Arthur S.,. Arthur S. Allen collection, ca.1900-1940. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Original drawing for an unnamed type design, designated no. 31A, [1917]. Newberry Library
creatorOf Ransom, Will, 1878-1955. Will Ransom papers, 1883-1954. Newberry Library
creatorOf Carman, Bliss, 1861-1929. Papers of Bliss Carman [manuscript], 1887-1930. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Goudy, Frederic William : [miscellaneous ephemeral material]. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Frederic W. Goudy Collection, 1905-1966 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
referencedIn Trovillion Private Press. Trovillion Private Press, 1908-1938. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Letter, May 17, Marlboro-on-Hudson, N.Y. to Harold Goddard Rugg / Fred W. Goudy. Dartmouth College Library
referencedIn Pirie MacDonald Portrait Photograph Collection, [1885]-1942 (bulk 1900-1942) © 2011 New-York Historical Society
referencedIn Pont, Charles E. (Charles Ernest), 1898-1971. Some letters by Goudy : a partial account of some of the drawn and written letters of the famed type-designer Frederic W. Goudy / by Charles E. Pont. ; with an introduction by F.W. Goudy. RIT Library, Wallace Library
referencedIn George Henry Sargent papers, 1883-1930 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Letters : Marlborough, N.Y., to Mary Alexander, Chicago, Ill., 1942 July 30-1943 Dec. 10. Newberry Library
creatorOf Macy, George. Limited Editions Club papers, 1929-1940. Dartmouth College Library
creatorOf Frederic W. Goudy Collection, 1925-1971 University of California, Los Angeles. William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. The Typophiles : their book, 1934-1942. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Letters of Frederic William Goudy to Christine Staton [manuscript] 1938-45. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Rogers, Bruce, 1870-1957. Bruce Rogers papers, 1902-1951. Newberry Library
creatorOf Frederic W. Goudy collection, 1922–1969, 1930–1950 University of Delaware Library - Special Collections
creatorOf Marchand, Leslie Alexis, 1900-1999. Leslie A. Marchand papers, 1940-1977. New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Continental Typefounders Association, Inc. Scrapbooks, 1925-1936. RIT Library, Wallace Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Artist file. Brooklyn Museum Libraries & Archives
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Letter, 1936 August 8 Central Connecticut State University, Elihu Burritt Library; Burritt Library
referencedIn Pont, Charles E. (Charles Ernest), 1898-1971. Charles E. Pont papers on Frederic W. Goudy, 1887-1972 (inclusive), 1935-1953 (bulk) RIT Library, Wallace Library
referencedIn Coggeshall, Howard, d. 1949. Fred Goudy, 1948-1949. RIT Library, Wallace Library
referencedIn John M. Wing Foundation. Detterer, Ernst F. - Administrative subject files, 1921-1947 (bulk 1931-1947). Newberry Library
referencedIn [Portrait of Frederic W. Goudy] [graphic] UC Berkeley Libraries
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. [Portfolio of two facsimiles of work from the Kelmscott Press, two original gatherings from the Kelmscott Chaucer, and a prospectus for the Basilisk Press facsimile of the Kelmscott Chaucer]. Princeton University Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Miscellaneous manuscripts, 1919. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Emmett, Mary P. Goudy. [A poem]. Central Connecticut State University, Elihu Burritt Library; Burritt Library
referencedIn Fine Press Printing Ephemera Collection, 1898-2010, 1924-1948 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special CollectionsGraphic Arts Collection
referencedIn Colt Press. Colt Press records, 1920-1973. Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Frederic W. Goudy Award collection, 1961-1992. RIT Library, Wallace Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Frederic Goudy collection, 1933-1978. Mclean County Historical Society Library
creatorOf Emmons, Earl H., 1888-. The Pforzheimer Bruce Rogers collection. Library of Congress
referencedIn Ellis, Richard Williamson, 1894-1982. Papers, 1916-1977. Temple University Libraries, Paley Library
referencedIn Trenholm, George F., 1886-1958. George F. Trenholm Papers, 1787-1958 (bulk 1920-1958). Boston College. John J. Burns Library
creatorOf Goudy, Frederic W. (Frederic William), 1865-1947. Frederic W. Goudy papers, 1921-1947. UC Berkeley Libraries
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Alexander, Mary D. person
associatedWith Allen, Arthur S., person
associatedWith Allen, Arthur S., collector. person
associatedWith Ballou, Robert O. (Robert Oleson), 1892-1977. person
associatedWith Beilenson, Peter, 1905-1962. person
associatedWith Bennett, Paul A., 1897-1966. person
associatedWith Beske, Kurt. person
associatedWith Carman, Bliss, 1861-1929. person
associatedWith Cary, Melbert Brinckerhoff, 1892-1941, person
associatedWith Chappell, Warren, 1904-1991. person
associatedWith Coggeshall, Howard, d. 1949. person
associatedWith Colt Press. corporateBody
associatedWith Continental Typefounders Association, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Corbitt, Mary F. person
associatedWith Dreyfus, John. person
associatedWith Ellis, Richard Williamson, 1894-1982. person
associatedWith Emmett, Mary P. person
associatedWith Fetterolf, Edwin H. person
associatedWith Goudy, Alice, person
associatedWith Goudy family. family
associatedWith Goudy Society, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Gowdy family. family
associatedWith Grabhorn Press. corporateBody
correspondedWith Grolier Club. Publications Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Hornung, Clarence Pearson. person
associatedWith John M. Wing Foundation. corporateBody
associatedWith Johnson, Fridolf, person
correspondedWith Keiser, Paul W. person
associatedWith Kingsport Press. corporateBody
associatedWith Lanston Monotype Machine Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Lewis, Bernard, 1918- person
associatedWith MacMillan, L. M. person
associatedWith Macy, George. person
associatedWith Marchand, Leslie Alexis, 1900-1999. person
associatedWith McArthur, Richard N. person
associatedWith Millay, Edna St. Vincent, 1892-1950. person
correspondedWith Mosher, Thomas Bird, 1852-1923 person
associatedWith Nelson, Charles Alexander, 1839-1933 person
associatedWith Newberry Library corporateBody
associatedWith Peter Pauper Press. corporateBody
associatedWith Pont, Charles E. (Charles Ernest), 1898-1971. person
associatedWith Press of the Woolly Whale. corporateBody
associatedWith Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections. corporateBody
associatedWith Ransom, Will, 1878-1955. person
associatedWith Rogers, Bruce, 1870-1957. person
associatedWith Rugg, Harold Goddard, 1883-1957. person
associatedWith Sargent, George H. (George Henry), 1867-1931 person
associatedWith Staton, Christine, person
associatedWith Trenholm, George F., 1886-1958. person
correspondedWith Trovillion Private Press. corporateBody
associatedWith Typophiles (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
associatedWith Universiṭah ha-ʻIvrit bi-Yerushalayim. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign campus). Library School. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
United States
McLean County (Ill.)
United States
United States
New York (State)
United States
United States
United States
Subject
Small presses--UnitedStates--20th century
Type and type-founding
Printing--History--20th century--Sources
Type designers--History--Sources
Type designers--20th century
Type designers
Type and type-founding--History--20th century
Printing--20th century
Type designers--Personal narratives
Printing
Small presses--20th century
Printers--History--Sources
Type designers--UnitedStates--20th century
Printers
Guest books
Typography--UnitedStates--20th century
Printing--History
Occupation
Printer
Function

Person

Birth 1865-03-08

Death 1947-05-11

Americans

English

Information

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