Decorative Cloth: Publishers' Trade Bindings, 1820-1920

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In the early nineteenth century, the development of case binding, a technique conducive to mass production, made the manufacture of books with uniform edition bindings possible. Publishers eventually began using this convenience to their further advantage, decorating the covers and spines as a form of commercial enticement and an expression of house pride. This continued throughout the nineteenth century and into the early years of the 20th century.
The Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections holds thousands of examples of these publishers’ trade bindings from throughout the 19th and early 20th century, a selection of which are currently being displayed on the 3rd floor of Deering Library. The exhibit is arranged chronologically by decade, ranging from the 1820s-1920s, and showcases some of the typical designs found during those decades.
The exhibit runs now through March 25, 2013 on the third floor of Deering Library, with access through the Main Library entrance at 1970 Campus Drive. It's open to the public during the Library's regular public hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 8:30 a.m. to noon.