For sale is a vintage Kelsey "Excelsior" case drawer with a lot of type, left behind by my late father in his collection of treasures. But he restored the press and used it until he packed it up, when he went to serve in WWII. I've photographed my dad's diagram of the lay of the case (not included), but you can see a better diagram on the Kelsey site. I've also photographed the case as we found it.I've included a photograph of the inventory sheet of the contents of the case, so that you know exactly what you are receiving! With that information, my husband dug in and found the following information in vintage Kelsey catalogs on line: (packing slip not included in this case, but photographed for you). In the late 1800's, the Kelsey Company introduced an improved patent Excelsior Type Case to the letterpress industry, calling it the best type case in the world. It was advertised as early as 1892, in the company's Printer's Guide and Dictionary. It can also be seen in a Kelsey Company catalogue, published about 1904, and seems to have gone out of use by about 1950.
Excelsior Type Cases were distinctly different from contemporary Thompson or California job cases. The Excelsior Type Case featured a double-side-by-side arrangement, intended to locate upper case glyphs (A) adjacent to the lower case (a) counterparts.A new innovation added 32 small compartments at the top of this type case to hold "odds and ends" like fractions, italics and signs. A lay of the Excelsior case schematic can be seen in the photos which accompany this listing. This Excelsior Type Case is stocked with a lot of Kelsey-cast, Monotype of the Thompson -cast lead alloy variety. The lot contains about 963 glyphs, about 68 spacers. The type is about 0.027 inches thick (which appear to be lead) for cutting additional spacers.
The type is about 0.165 inches wide, and seems to be a bold No. 11 font of a serif type-- similar to the computer font Century. (See photo of the type sample). Age of the Case : The Excelsior Case has a pressed-wood bottom similar to the hardboard product called Masonite , providing a clue to the age of this collectible artifact.Masonite was patented in 1924 and was mass-produced after 1929. Case Construction : The case frame and dividers are constructed of wood, and the bottom sonsists of a sheet of pressed-wood, similar to the hardboard product called Masonite. Case Dimensions : The overall dimensions are approximately 21-13/16" long, by 16-5/8" wide, by 1-3/8" high 1-7/8" over raised lip on the front of the case.
Age of the Type : The type was obtained in conjunction with a very used Kelsey printing press about 1936. The press was so antiquated in 1936 that the rubber rollers had completely disintegrated! Letterpress Type : The letterpress type appears to be Monotype, typical of type cast on a Thompson caster. Monotype was cast from a lead alloy.
These pieces exhibit that brighter, metallic luster, characteristic of lead alloys. The body of this Kelsey-cast monotype is further distinguished by one "nick, " characteristic of the Monotype cast on Thompson equipment. Some colons and semi-colons exhibit three "nicks". The type has been pre-sorted, bagged, labelled, inventoried and packed in accordance with the lay of the case.
Font : The Letterpress pieces are about 0.165 wide, and appear to be about a bold No. 11 font of a serif style, similar to the computer font Century. " (See photo) Lower case "e" measures 0.0825" thick, yielding about 12 of these characters per inch. Please let us know if your recognize the style of the type from the photo and/or the measurements.
Notice the "tag" at the top of the capital "A" in the photo. Condition : As found, as is, and as photographed. Appears to be in very good condition for its age. Some individual compartment separators have been lightly labeled. Printing museums, collectors of antique printing memorabilia, leterpress enthusiasts, anyone with an antique Excelsior cabinet with missing drawers, shadow box artists, etc.Put a piece of plate glass on top, and craft a unique coffee table or wall hanging display!! Thanks for reading all this information!! If you have questions, or want photos of any other type face, or measurements, whatever, please don't hesitate to ask. And if you can add any expertise to this listing, please, PLEASE let us know!! The item "Rare Collectible KELSEY Excelsior Type Case + Used Lot of Letterpress Monotype" is in sale since Sunday, October 11, 2020.
This item is in the category "Business & Industrial\Printing & Graphic Arts\Printing & Graphic Essentials\Type, Cuts & Printing Blocks". The seller is "churrolady" and is located in New Berlin, Wisconsin. This item can be shipped to United States, Canada, United Kingdom, China, Mexico, Germany, Japan, France, Australia, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Sweden, South Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan, South africa, Thailand, Belgium, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Austria, Bahamas, Israel, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi arabia, United arab emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Croatia, Malaysia, Antigua and barbuda, Aruba, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Saint kitts and nevis, Saint lucia, Montserrat, Turks and caicos islands, Barbados, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Brunei darussalam, Bolivia, Egypt, French guiana, Guernsey, Gibraltar, Guadeloupe, Iceland, Jersey, Jordan, Cambodia, Liechtenstein, Sri lanka, Luxembourg, Monaco, Macao, Martinique, Maldives, Nicaragua, Oman, Pakistan, Paraguay, Reunion, Uruguay.