Trip to the American Bookbinders Museum
Over the summer, I spent a week in California with my family (a real vacation – yay!). I was fortunate enough to visit The American Bookbinders Museum in San Francisco.
I visited the museum back in 2009 when Tim James ran it. It has since moved into a gorgeous space and now offers a wonderful experience of the history of bookbinding and an explanation of why it’s relevant today. It’s amazing what can happen in a few years!
I was charmed by the posters – they seem to be reproductions of what I’m assuming are etchings.
I’m pretty sure that this is the same press I visited nine years ago. The detail work is beautiful.
Until the book-sewing machine was introduced, books were usually hand sewn by women. Women were a natural choice to operate the machines due to their familiarity with textile sewing machines.
The irony is not lost on me that the person who donated this guillotine has the last name of Stump.
There were a number of historic book models on display that just happened to be bound by one of my favorite people, Karen Hanmer. If you’re new here, you should know that I’m a bit of a Karen groupie. If you’re not new here, then maybe you’re tired of hearing me talk about her. Too bad.
As we were leaving the museum, I took a look at the donors list and saw quite a few familiar names…
…including my own!
I totally forgot that I had sent them some sample books a number of years ago – I acquired them from a bookbinder who had passed away.
If you’re in San Francisco and geek out over bookbinding and its history, then you absolutely need to haul ass over to the museum. Here are the details:
- Address: 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco, CA (Google Map)
- Phone: (415) 824-9754