Southern Cross

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November 29, 2013 at 8:08 PM #5542


Nicolette Gray traces the British history of this face to Miller & Richard’s Ornamented No. 9 c1857, notes a German version in 1858 and reports that Austin/J. Wood showed a (rare!) LC alphabet in 1863.¹

McGrew adds that the Bruce TF (New York) cataloged it as Ornamented 1041,² and it was shown by the Boston TF in 1860. Southern Cross is not to be confused with Bruce’s Ornamented No. 1528, known today as Cross Gothic.

Like so many other recent bubble-bursting “surprises,” two sizes were shown in Hænel’s amazing catalog of 1847! Since Bauer attributes Hænel’s success to importation of roman types from British and French TFs³ and Gray’s earliest specimen is dated about a decade later, the design almost certainly originated in France.

Preliminary Specimens

From his treasure chest of film fonts, Star THP Partner Robert Donona has kindly furnished a full specimen complete with punctuation and ampersand.

¹Gray, N. (1938): XIXth Century Ornamented Types and Title Pages, pages 186/202 Faber and Faber Limited, London.
²McGrew, M. (1993): American Metal Types of the Twentieth Century (Second, Revised Edition), page 343. Oak Knoll Press, New Castle, DE.
³Bauer, Friedrich (Offenbach 1929); Reichardt, Hans (Frankfurt 2011): Chronik der Schriftgießereien in Deutschland und den deutschsprachigen Nachbarländern. Courtesy of the Klingspor Museum.


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