Golding Printing Presses
The company and its presses
In 1869, William Golding (1845 - 1916) began manufacturing
printing equipment in Boston. Eventually, Golding's
company produced three lines of printing presses:
In 1918 American Type Founders bought the company and continued
production of all three lines until 1927. At that time, Thomson
National Company (manufacturers of Colt's Armory Press) acquired
the factory and inventory.
- The Jobber, a full-sized family of professional
presses, with chase size ranging from 8 x 12 inches to 15 x
21. The Art Jobber series includes a more advanced inking system
and is a heavier press compared to the regular series.
- The Pearl, a smaller foot-treadle press manufactured
in sizes from 5 x 8 inches to 9 x 14.
- The Official, a hand-operated table-top model whose
chase size ranges from 2 x 3 inches to 10 x 15.
Here is a summary of the main models of Golding presses:
|| Chase Size
|No. 6 || 8 x 12
|No. 7 || 10 x 15
|No. 8 ||12 x 18
|No. 9 ||15 x 21
ART JOBBER SERIES
|No. 18 ||12 x 18
|No. 21 ||15 x 21
|| Chase Size
|No. 1 || 5 x 8
|No. 3 || 7 x 11
|No. 5 || 9 x 14
|No. 8 || 5 x 8
|No. 11 || 7 x 11
|No. 14 || 9 x 14
|| Chase Size
|Junior ||2 x 3
|No. 1 || 3 x 4½
|No. 2 ||4 x 6
|No. 3 || 5 x 7½
|No. 4 ||6 x 9
|No. 6 || 8¼ x 12½
|No. 7 || 10 x 15
|No. 9 ||6 x 9
|No. 12 || 8¼ x 12½
The 1908 catalog
After purchasing a 1908 Golding catalog, I retyped the text from
press-related pages and scanned relevant diagrams and pictures.
The result is a 28 page reproduction taken from the original 85
You can view or download a 4 Mbyte PDF file
containing the facsimile edition.
You may need to right-click the link and save the file ("Save
Target As..." menu item) in order to copy it to your system.
Note: PDF (Portable Document Format) files are ready for
display or printing using the freely available Adobe Reader.
ATF and BB&S Catalogs
Golding presses are listed in the American Type Founders 1923
catalog, and a nearly identical listing appears in the Barnhart
Brothers & Spindler Catalog 25. Click on a page's thumbnail
to see its full-sized scan.
Jobber and Official
Steve Saxe has collected a lot of information about Golding
presses over the years, and freely shares it with anyone who is
interested. Here are some examples:
A Brief History of Golding & Co.
In 1981, Steve wrote an article recounting the story of Golding
for issue number 6 of the American Printing History
Association's journal Printing History . You can access
the APHA's Web site for a
1.74 MB PDF file containing a scan of this eight page article.
The serial number of all Golding presses is in the top center of
the bed of the press, just under the rim of the ink disk. It may
require some kerosene and steel wool and a flashlight to make it
visible, but it's there. Steve has made available the
Golding Factory Log Book, which shows the dates of
manufacture for presses based on their model (e.g. "Official
# 6" or "Pearl # 3") and serial number.
If you're not a Web spider, you can figure out Steve's e-mail
sos22 (at) optonline (dot) net
Steve has a number of Golding-related pictures in his
Steve scanned some Golding press parts diagrams. Click on the
thumbnail to go to the full sized version.
Related Web links
- The Internet Archive has several Golding documents:
Golding's 1874 Illustrated Catalogue of Printing Presses and Printing Materials
Golding 1881 Presses, Tools and Printing Materials Catalogue
The Printers' Review, New Series No. 13 (1 May 1893)
- You can find many Golding-related videos on YouTube, such as...
Kate oils the Golding Jobber No. 7 (3:28)
Golding Jobber No 6 platen adjustment & operation, part 1 (8:33)
Golding Jobber No 6 platen adjustment & operation, part 2 (8:48)
Golding Jobber No 6 platen adjustment & operation, part 3 (3:30)
Letterpress Printing on the Golding Pearl (0:48)
Golding Jobber No. 8 in Action (1:08)
Golding #9 Letterpress (0:41)
- The video Printer's Block shows Robert Warner
printing with the 1901 Golding Jobber at South Street Seaport
Museum in Lower Manhattan, New York city.
- Several other museums have Golding presses on display:
Howard Iron Works Printing Museum & Restoration
(Oakville, Ontario, Canada) has an
1887 Golding Jobber # 6, and provides photos of its restoration.
International Printing Museum (Carson, California) has an 8x12 Golding Jobber in
The print shop at
Museum (Narragansett, Rhode Island) includes a Golding
Museum of Printing (Haverhill, Massachusetts) displays
two sizes of Pearl, two of Jobber, and a table-top press.
- The Smithsonian Institute lists Golding presses among its
Printing Presses in the Graphic Arts Collection, written in
- View pictures of Golding presses with detailed descriptions
at the Briar Press
on-line printing press museum.
- There are Letterpress Commons entries for
Golding Jobber # 7,
Golding Jobber # 18,
Golding Pearl # 1,
Golding Pearl # 2,
Golding Official Imprinter,
Official # 2,
Official # 4,
Official # 9/Map,
Official # 12,
Golding Proof Press.
- There are related Flickr albums:
Letterpress Golding Pearl group.
The Golding Jobber group.
Golding Press Collection and
Lyme Letterpress Shop albums by John Falstrom.
- Here are three relevant Instagram hashtags:
PearlRestor is a mailing list for people who are restoring or
troubleshooting their Golding Pearl presses.
- Wikipedia has an article on
Golding & Company.
Steve Rickenbacker describes how he restored a Golding
Jobber # 7. His list
of presses includes an 1879 7x11 Pearl and an 1887 10x15
- Perennial Designs' Golding
Press Model Info page has a wealth of information.
- The Amalgamated Printers' Association includes articles from
Fred Williams' Type & Press describing the
- For many months Bill Elligett wrote about a different
printing press. In November 2006 he selected The Golding
- Griffith H. Williams describes the
"graceful little 7x11 Pearl Press" he learned to print on.
Handmade On Peconic Bay uses an 1895 Pearl # 3 press.
- The Third
& Elm Press has an 1897 Golding Jobber.
- The Book Arts Workshop at Dartmouth College uses an
Improved Pearl # 11.
- The website Circuitous Root, "Studies in Antiquarian
technology and Other Matters," by David M. MacMillan and
Rollande Krandall, has a Golding Presses section.
- The Easy Keeper Press blog describes getting a
Pearl set up and running.
- Myrna Keliher's Expedition Press in Kingston, Washington,
provides a description of its Golding Jobber # 6.