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Subject: Letter books

Letter books

From: Sandrine Decoux <sandrine.decoux>
Date: Tuesday, November 16, 2004
Andres Felipe Robayo Franco <robayo_andres [at] hotmail__com> writes

>I have some letter books, those that were used in the first half of
>the 20 century. They have in the first part an index and the second
>empty pages of copying paper, I would like to know if somebody can
>explain how they were used, I haven't found any explanation on how
>letters were copied to them. Were used with carbon copy sheets? or
>other media? How? Thanks for any explanation,

If these are the type of books with pages made of a thin tissue
paper, the process was the following: a letter was written with a
special copying ink and a page of the book was dampened. The letter
was then inserted into the book at the right page and the book was
pressed. The ink penetrated the tissue support, so the copy could be
read easily. There is a more detailed explanation here:

If you are interested in "dead media", I recommend the following


And some books:

    Kissel, Eleonore and Vigneau, Erin.
    Architectural Photoreproductions: A Manual for Identification
    and Care, Oak Knoll Press/The New York Botanical Gardens, 1999.

    Proudfoot, W.B.
    The Origin of Stencil Duplicating, Hitchinson, London, 1972.

    Rhodes, Barbara and Streeter, William Wells
    Before Photocopying. The Art and History of Mechanical Copying.
    1780-1938, Oak Knoll Press, New Castle (Delaware), 1999.

There have also been postings on the subject of dead media on the
Books and Special Collections Forum.

                  Conservation DistList Instance 18:23
                 Distributed: Monday, November 22, 2004
                       Message Id: cdl-18-23-011
Received on Tuesday, 16 November, 2004

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