Roycroft (U.S.A.) / c. 1928

back next

Design: The Roycroft logo at the top is based on medieval merchant marks, which often incorporated the corporate initial(s) enclosed within a globe representing the world, the whole being subordinate to the cross of Christ. Rejecting the thin, starved-looking 'modern' typefaces common in the 19th century, Hubbard's bookwork featured typefaces based on chunky 17th century forms, with decorative swashes. The same influences can be seen here. The 'English Singers' line is lettered in a squat but legible Gothic with cheery Lombardic initials, a continuation of the spirit of medievalism which infused the Roycroft group.

History: Inspired by meeting William Morris and John Ruskin (leaders of the British Arts and Crafts movement) in England in 1894, American Elbert Hubbard set up his own private press on his return to the U.S.A. This venture led to a loose association of like-minded artisans who called themselves The Roycrofters. Their aim was to marry fine craftsmanship and machine production for furniture, pottery etc. -- and music. The Roycrofters' records were pressed by Cameo between 1928 and 1930. Label scan courtesy of Richard Kegler of the U.S.A.

site map   era index