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In the heart of Central Florida lies the Swan City and in that fair city lies a dormant letterpress. Help us bring it back to life.
70 backers pledged $6,460 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$6,460

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When I moved from Cleveland, Ohio to Lakeland, Florida (the swan city) in the year 2000, I was unaware that I was repeating the path of a Chandler and Price 8x12 New Style letterpress, which had made the trip more than eighty years earlier.

This particular press (serial no. B59016) left our common birthplace, as best as can be established from the serial number, some time in the late 1910's and took up residence in the pressroom of one of Lakeland's two newspapers, which merged in 1928 to form the Lakeland Ledger and Star-Telegram. The gentleman seated below, A.J. Trueblood, was the foreman of the the Ledger's composing room.

photo courtesy http://fpc.dos.state.fl.us

Several years later, Trueblood formed his own printing company and brought several presses and type machines from the Ledger, including this press. 

Like many letterpresses extant, this one has been used exclusively for die-cutting for more than a decade and has sat un-used for several years. I need your help in acquiring this piece of Lakeland history and bringing it back to its prime working condition. The press appears to be in great shape, but needs a thorough cleaning (it's covered in sawdust and gunk) and some additional parts to adapt it to modern letterpress printing.  This project is designed to fund:

  • the press
  • a new motor
  • rollers
  • an aluminum base
  • photopolymer plates
  • ink
  • paper
  • rent - our floors can't handle this half-ton monster

I've figured, in total, it will cost approximately $4,250 to bring this press to printing life and get the plates and paper necessary to give you the goods.

Speaking of the goods...there's a poster and some Swan City Press goodies available, but even cooler than that: custom letterpress print work at an affordable price! These custom creations can be made from your art or we'll design it for you. Here's the catch: we can't have it ready the day after this is over.  It will take several weeks (how many, we're not sure) to get everything up and running and ready and then we work to fulfill. 

Most of the work I do through my custom event stationery company, a fine press, is letterpress, where a light kiss has given way to an ultra-textural punch of the plate.

image courtesy Clayton Austin

image courtesy Tina Sargeant

Please help me bring this piece of Lakeland back to its former glory and get some great letterpress work in return.

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    MAN, IT FEELS GOOD!
    For $1 or more, you get the sweet satisfaction of helping rescue a beautiful piece of (Lakeland) history. You'll also be listed as a MAIN STREET SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press commemorative print (and our website).

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    6 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    MY NAME IN PRINT!
    Receive a limited-edition 2-sided print commemorating the Swan City Press project and honoring all of its backers. You'll be listed on the print as a MAIN STREET SPONSOR.

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    28 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    OH, GOODIES! Not only will you receive a limited-edition 2-sided print commemorating the Swan City Press project and honoring all of its backers; you'll also get a grab-bag of SCP goodies. It all depends on what we fancy, but could be bookmarks, coasters, bookplates, seed bombs ("plant me" cards embedded with plant seeds), and all sorts of other crazy things (we're open to ideas!). You'll be listed on the print as a MAIN STREET SPONSOR.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    LET'S DO BUSINESS. In addition to the poster and goodies, giving at this level entitles you to 150 black business cards. You can submit a design or ask us to design it (limit 2 revisions). This is a great way to get letterpress business cards without spending an arm and a leg. You'll also be listed as a SOUTH KENTUCKY SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print (and our website).

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    Limited 15 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    LET'S DO BUSINESS IN COLOR. In addition to the poster and goodies, giving at this level entitles you to 100 3-color business cards. You can submit a design or ask us to (limit 2 revisions). You can do 3-colors on one side or 2/1. This is a great way to get color letterpress business cards without spending an arm and a leg. You'll also be listed as a SOUTH KENTUCKY SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print (and our website).

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    Limited 5 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    GOING POSTAL. Get 100 1-color letterhead, envelopes, and thank you cards+envelopes. You can use them for personal or business stationery. You'll also be listed as a SOUTH KENTUCKY SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print(and our website).

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    Limited 1 backer
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    INVITE THEM. For this generous giving level, you'll get 100 1-color wedding (or party) invitations and RSVPs along with printed envelopes for both. This reward is only available for events occurring AFTER January 1, 2012. You'll also be listed as a LAKE MORTON SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print (and our website).

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    Limited 0 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    PRINT YOUR OWN. For this gift, you can join me as we print your project. At a mutually agreed upon time, we'll meet in my Lakeland, Florida pressroom to print your project. This level includes 100 pieces of a project to be determined. Potential projects include business cards, thank you cards, letterhead, or a number of other one-sheet prints. You'll also be listed as a LAKE MORTON SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print (and our website).

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    HERE COMES THE BRIDE. The big give means you get 150 3-color wedding (or party) invitations and RSVPs along with printed envelopes for both plus an additional info card (can be a map, reception card, or thank you card). This reward is only available for events occurring AFTER January 1, 2012. You'll also be listed as a LAKE MORTON SPONSOR on our official Swan City Press print (and our website).

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    Limited 1 backer
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Funding period

- (32 days)