SIMON LOXLEY
Believe Me, I Am: selected letters of Frederic Warde, 1921–1939

In the wake of the 2013 publication of Printer’s Devil, my biography of Frederic Warde, I was invited to give presentations on the subject at St Bride Library in London, the Society of Printers in Boston, the New York Typophiles, Chicago's Caxton Club and the Zamorano Club in Pasadena. The warmth with which the talks were received was very gratifying, and it was good to return once more to Warde, who had engaged so much of my time and thoughts a few years earlier.  In preparation for writing my script, I had put into chronological order all the copies of Warde correspondence in my possession, then read them through from start to finish. It was a strange experience, a life flashing before your eyes, the tone of voice and the reactions to that life's experiences taking a rapid trajectory, like an accelerated film of the sun rising, crossing the sky and then setting. I was struck once again at how remarkable many

of the letters were, either written in a hand that became with time increasingly and elegantly calligraphic, or else hammered out, sometimes at great length, on a typewriter. The irony was that although Warde had been secretive about his life, he had left behind a highly comprehensive guide to many of his thoughts and feelings about his life and the professional world he was part of.  It was Jesse Marsolais, the secretary of Boston's Society of Printers, who gave me the idea of doing a 'selected letters'. Believe me, I am contains a selection of 135 pieces of Warde's correspondence, covering the period from his introductory letter to his great friend William Kittredge in 1921 to just before his death in 1939. It's a varied selection; some are conversational

and gossipy, others business- and

project-orientated, with financial and technical detail; some are short, some long. All the letters are fully annotated, and the

book contains over 100 illustrations, not

just of Warde's work, but of those he

writes to, and about.

 

Page size: 245mm x 190mm,

220 pages, colour.

 

If you would like a copy, please email me through the website; the book costs £18 plus £2 p+p for UK, £6 Europe, £10 rest of the world.

 

 

'… adds much to an understanding of the man … Loxley has taken pains to arrange Warde’s letters as a narrative … He provides brief biographical sketches and portraits of Warde’s correspondents and identifies many minor characters.' Dennis Bryans, Script and Print
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