Empty California Job Case


This style of U.S. California case has three rows of cap boxes larger than the other two, and also has the : ; boxes smaller than the . - boxes. It is shown by Henry: Printing for School and Shop (1917), Polk: Vocational Printing (1918), American Type Founders: Specimen Book (1923), Hamilton Manufacturing Co, Modern Printing Office Furniture, Catalog 15 (1922) and Printing Plant Equipment, Type Storage Section, Catalog 16 (c.1932), Polk: The Practice of Printing (1926 and 3rd ed 1945), Thompson Cabinet Co, Equipment for Printing Plants, Catalog 47 (c.1949), Polk & Gage: A Composition Manual (1953) and Missouri-Central Type Foundry: Price List (1959). It is also shown by Atkins: Art & Practice of Printing (1932), and Hostettler: The Printer's Terms (1949 and 4th ed 1963). Note that the diagram above should show the two boxes bottom left (for x and q) the same size, although the boxes for : and ; are correctly shown smaller. Kelsey: Do Your Own Printing (1930) shows the case, but with only one box above the i box, rather than two. As the accompanying lay thus omits the numeral 2, this appears a mistake. Kelsey also show a divided s box, which must also be a mistake, since the long s had long been out of use. By the time of their Printers Supply Book (1969) the case is correctly shown.

An alternative style has the : and ; boxes the same size as the . - x q boxes, and is shown, for example, by Kelsey: Printers' Supply Book (1969) and in England by Stephenson Blake & Co: Printing Equipment (1960s). The Black Rock Press at University of Nevada, Reno in 1998 had both styles of case made by Hamilton, and both made by Thompson Cabinet Co. An earlier configuration of this case has only one row of cap boxes (the top right) smaller than the other (four) rows. It is shown by Palmer & Rey: New Specimen Book (1884) and Hamilton Manufacturing Co: Catalog (c.1897) (both in Pryor, A History of the California Job Case, Journal of the Printing Historical Society No.7 (1971)), and by Barnhart Bros & Spindler: Pony Specimen (1890s). All three slightly different styles of configuration can be compared together as California.

Pryor dates the introduction of the original California Job Case as 1874, and states that it had become the most popular U.S. typecase by the early 1890s, and indeed Palmer & Rey in 1892 state it to have been in constant use on the Pacific Coast for nearly 20 years, and the best full-size case ever made. A variety of lays for this case can be seen as US California Job, a modern version as Polk & Gage, and foreign versions as UK California Job, and WA California Job.

The empty two-third case is Two Third but there is some confusion between this and the Two Third Yankee.

Other empty cases
ie with the boxes left blank
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ie with characters assigned to boxes
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This page was written in 2001 by David Bolton and last updated 9 May 2015.