Can I buy type from C.C. Stern Type Foundry?
As our machines become more operational, we will commence a subscription service whereby we plan to release ornaments, special characters, dingbats, decorative & border material to subscribers on a regular basis. We will not otherwise ship these items or offer them beyond our subscription service. There are a number of operational and professional type foundries in the United States that you can purchase type from. We’re happy to make recommendations if you need them.
What about the typeface Stern? You’ll be selling that, right?
It is our intention to offer Stern on some level for educational purposes, and it may be a typeface that we eventually offer for sale.
Since C.C. Stern Type Foundry is a “working” museum, what kind of work will be done here?
It’s our intention to not only restore these machines to working order, but to actually use them often to cast type and decorative material to produce finely printed pieces that support our programming. In doing so, it is our goal to inspire and engage people with the process. This printing could include ephemera such as broadsides or small publications on topics related to regional printing history, biographies of local printing trades people, commemorative printing, and type or machine history related to our collection. The above items will be made available at the applicable donor level, and may also be available for sale at the museum.
Who will be the designated printers and type casters? Who gets to use this stuff?
Currently the working board will be the primary casting machine operators. Volunteers will assist in this process. We envision that the type cast by the C.C. Stern Type Foundry may be available to institutions for the primary (though not necessarily exclusive*) purpose of printing the projects mentioned above. Access to type may also be available to a private press or printer under similar terms. Type will be returned to the foundry for re-melting and reuse at a pre-arranged time.
As a museum visitor, what should I expect to see & learn?
The museum will be open the third Saturday of each month from 11am-3pm. During this time staff & volunteers will be performing routine maintenance & repairs, cataloguing our collection, and casting. Someone will be available to answer questions, discuss ideas & generally share enthusiasm for type. Visitors are welcome to browse our collection of printed ephemera, books and manuals related to typography and type casting.
We will be working to establish special exhibits related to typography & regional printing history that will be of interest to visitors to the museum. We hope that the Foundry programming will provide a forum for those interested in all aspects of typography. We intend to host informal discussions, film screenings, workshops and other events to that end. We are also available to visit your classroom or institution to give a presentation.
Can I request a private tour?
We may be able to offer educational tours for groups outside our public hours, depending on availability of museum volunteers. Please use our contact us form to request a tour.
What do volunteers do?
Volunteers are primarily needed to assist in cleaning and cataloguing our current collection. As our reference library grows, we continue to need assistance in accurately creating records of the items. Volunteer research related to typographic & printing history, or specifically related to our museum is encouraged. We also have need for skilled professionals in areas related to non-profit fundraising & development. If you have a skill to volunteer, let us know! We hold special volunteer work hours a number of times a year.
*One of the primary goals of the C.C. Stern Type Foundry is to preserve the art and craft of casting type. How do we do that? We can keep our machines running and share the experience of type casting with the public. However, we are a non-profit and not in the business of selling type! In conjunction with preserving the equipment, we feel strongly that the industry of type making needs to be supported! We are lucky that there are still a handful of commercial foundries still making high-quality foundry type and are easily accessible.