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Surviving Liberty Presses

Information presented in the following table is based upon postings to the Letterpress E-mail Discussion List (mainly one by Erik Desmyter on Nov 24, 2001), the list included in the 2007 Journal of the Printing Historical Society article by Erik Desmyter and Bob Oldham, plus other research. LetPress messages are referenced by author and date.

Owner / Location Model Serial No. Further Information
 
The first group of presses has an oval plate mounted on the counter-weight that lists only Degener as the manufacturer, and only the original patent. The serial number is not surrounded by a shield. They were probably manufactured in the 1860s.
The Farmers' Museum
Cooperstown, New York, USA
2 610  Ted Shuart (Oct 22, 2004)
The Farmers' Museum
Ed Regan
Rensselaer, Indiana, USA
  728  from Erik Desmyter
Greene County Historical Museum
Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, USA
2 1151  from Bob Oldham
Greene County Historical Museum
Private collection
Oklahoma, USA
  1156  from Erik Desmyter
Brune Printing Company
Paulding, Ohio, USA
2 1180  Dave Brune (Sep 25, 2009)
Federal State Museum of Hesse
Darmstadt, Germany
2 1518  Detailed report
Federal State Museum of Hesse
Private collection
Indiana, USA
  1589  from Erik Desmyter
International Printing Museum
Carson, California, USA
4 1638  from Erik Desmyter
International Printing Museum
David Carpenter
Warsaw, Missouri, USA
2 2194  David Carpenter (May 8, 2008)
 
There is a significant gap in serial numbers, so we don't know when the manufacturer's name switched to Degener & Weiler. At last report, the following press was dismantled in storage and unavailable for examination. According to a 1985 exhibition catalog the press was made by Degener and Weiler, New York.
Bowne & Co. Stationers, South Street Seaport Museum
New York, New York, USA
3   Steve Saxe (Oct 30, 1996)
Erik Desmyter (Oct 24, 2004)
South Street Seaport Museum
 
The next group of presses have a shield on the crank shaft listing the manufacturer Degener & Weiler of New York and London. All three patents and the extension are included. These were probably manufactured between 1874 and 1877.
Haliburton Highlands Museum
upper Ontario, Canada
2 6140  from Erik Desmyter
Hailburton Highlands Museum
Mystic Seaport Museum
Mystic, Connecticut, USA
2 or 2A 6293  Detailed report
Mystic Seaport Museum
Ted Salkin
Healdsburg, California, USA
2A 6706  Detailed report
Bob Oldham (May 19, 2005)
 
Weiler bought out the Degener family's interest in the company during 1877. The following press lists the manufacturer as F. M. Weiler of New York and London. All three patents and the extension are included. This press was probably manufactured in late 1877.
International Printing Museum
Carson, California, USA
2A 6918  from Erik Desmyter
International Printing Museum
 
The following presses list the manufacturer as F. M. Weiler of New York. (London was dropped.) All three patents and the extension are included. These were probably manufactured after 1877.
Göta Svensson
Holmsund, Sweden
3 8173  from Göta Svensson
Private collection
France
2 8210  from Erik Desmyter
Deutsches Technikmuseum
Berlin, Germany
2A 8546  from Erik Desmyter
Deutsches Technikmuseum (German Museum of Technology)
History San Jose
San Jose, California, USA
3 8574  Detailed report
History San Jose Print Shop
Patrick Goossens
Antwerp, Belgium
2A 8739  from Erik Desmyter
Druckereimuseum "Benary-Speicher"
Erfurt, Germany
  8826  Detailed report
Druckereimuseum "Benary-Speicher"
Germany   8853  Offered in a Nov 25, 2006, auction
Paul Aken
Zion, Illinois, USA
2A 8950  Detailed report
Earliest known press with a throw-off, patented in 1886.
Father Miguel O'Reilly House
St. Augustine, Florida, USA
2A 8965  from Erik Desmyter
Father Miguel O'Reilly House Museum
Private Collection
Belgium
2A(?) 9003  from Erik Desmyter
No throw-off
Muzeum In ynierii Miejskiej w Krakowie
Cracow, Poland
  9090  Picture by Martyn Kramek
No throw-off
Muzeum In ynierii Miejskiej w Krakowie
Private Collection
Belgium
2A 9118  from Erik Desmyter
No throw-off
Sarah Verroken
Lessines, Belgium
2A 9223  Detailed report
No throw-off
Plombe et Encre
Chavannes-près-Renens (near Lausanne), Switzerland
  10059  from John Cornelisse
Association d'Encre et de Plomb
 
All the remaining presses have a throw-off.
Kulturhuef (Musées Arts Cinéma)
Grevenmacher, Luxembourg
  10221  Picture from Monika Jakobs
Kulturhuef (Musées Arts Cinéma)
Heritage Museum
Libby, Montana, USA
3 10354  J. Mike Powers (Apr 23, 1999 and Nov 23, 2001)
Heritage Museum
Tempo Srl
Belluno, Italy
2 10415  Detailed report
Museum for the Printing Arts
Leipzig, Germany
2A 10424  Museum for the Printing Arts
 
The following presses show the manufacturer as F. M. Weiler of New York and Berlin. No patents or extensions are listed. These were probably manufactured in 1890 or later.
HIRGO (Hoger Instituut voor Grafische Opleiding)
Gent, Belgium
2A 11883  Erik Desmyter (Aug 5, 2001)
Royal Library's Museum of Book Printing
Brussels, Belgium
2 or 2A 11897  Detailed report
Royal Library
Luis Nunes
Lisbon, Portugal
2A 12026  Detailed report
Erik Desmyter
Gent, Belgium
2A 12274  Erik Desmyter (Aug 5, 2001)
Briar Press On-Line Press Museum
Niall Cook
United Kingdom
4 13171  Niall Cook (Apr 27, 1999)
Drukkerijmuseum Strobbe
Izegem, Belgium
2 or 2A 13263  Detailed report
Private Collection
Belgium
  13952  from Erik Desmyter
Private collection
Belgium
2A 14442  from Erik Desmyter
Bibliotheque Universitaire Moretus Plantin
Namur, Belgium
2(?) 14463  from Erik Desmyter
Museum of Industrial Archaeology and Textile (MIAT)
Gent, Belgium
3 14525  Detailed report
Museum of Industrial Archaeology and Textile
Herwig Kempenaers
Turnhout, Belgium
2A 14631  Detailed report
Historische Drukkerij Turnhout
Private Collection
Belgium
2 or 2A 14697  from Erik Desmyter
Private collection
Belgium
  14923  from Erik Desmyter
Private Collection
Belgium
3 or 3A 15290  from Erik Desmyter
Genadendalse Drukkery/Printing Works
Genadendalse, South Africa
    from Helen Evans
Genadendal Mission Station

The following are Liberty-like presses made by other manufacturers:

Owner / Location Manufacturer Further Information
Kner Printing Industry Museum
Gyoma, Hungary
J. Anger and Son
Vienna, Austria
Detailed report
Erik Desmyter (Jul 11, 2004)
Books from the Gyomai Kner Press exhibit
Museum of Industrial Archaeology and Textile (MIAT)
Gent, Belgium
Henri Jullien
Brussels, Belgium
YouTube video
Museum of Industrial Archaeology and Textile

If you come across a Liberty press or can provide further information on the ones listed here, please let me know. Here are some tips on how to identify a Liberty press.


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