Encyclopedia of Architecture: A Dictionary of the Science and Practice of Architecture, Building, Carpentry, Etc., from the Earliest Ages to the Present Time, Froming a Comprehensive Work of Reference for the Use of Architects, Builders, Carpenters, Masons, Engineers, Students, Professional Men, and Amateurs, Volume 2

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Johnson, Fry & Company, 1899
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Peter Nicholson (1765-1844) was a Scottish architect and builder. "Encyclopedia" is a posthumous revision of his "Architectural Dictionary," most likely issued by the American publishers without any payment to Nicholson's estate or publisher. Billin & Brother made the plates and printed undated editions for Martin and Johnson, and for Johnson, Fry & Co. The Billin imprint appears on the last page of Volume 2. The Billin editions, with 230 engravings, are masterful examples of fine printing. Getting good impressions of engravings required a laborious, exacting process, called "making ready," to ensure the proper pressure on all parts of the image. The pressmen took an impression, pasted it to the tympan of the press, then scraped away paper where the image needed lightening and built it up with bits of paper where it needed darkening. A new impression was then taken, and the process repeated -- for days, if necessary. Images of the entire book are online at http://name.umdl.umich.edu/abt7668  

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