Goudy Mediaeval typeface
Scope and Contents
Goudy Mediaeval is Frederic W. Goudy’s 71st type design, which he completed in 1930. It is a blackletter typeface that was modeled after a 12th century German manuscript hand for the capitals, and later Renaissance handwriting for the lowercase. Goudy considered it one of his most original designs. The Mediaeval types are comprised of 9 drawers of metal type that were cast at Goudy’s own Village Letter Foundery in Marlborough, New York.
- Creation: 1930 (release date)
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open to researchers, but must be handled and used with the supervision of a curator.
Biographical / Historical
Frederic W. Goudy (1865-1947) was an American printer and type designer of more than 120 typefaces. Frederic's wife Bertha M. Goudy (1869-1935) worked closely with him and was a graphic designer in her own right. Both Frederic and Bertha were self-taught.
The Goudys established their Village Press in 1903 in Park Ridge, Illinois and later moved operations to Hingham, Massachusetts, and then New York City. In 1923, they moved their residence and Press to Marlborough, New York, to a property which included an old flourmill. Frederic’s goal was to expand his workshop’s footprint, so he could not only design type and print books, but also cast his own type at what he called the Village Press Letter Foundery. He and Bertha named the compound “Deepdene” after their former street in Forest Hills, Queens, New York.
Since 1911, Goudy employed Robert Weibking (1870–1927) to engrave his designs into matrices for casting metal type. However, Goudy decided to learn the craft himself. Ever the tinkerer, at Deepdene Goudy put together his own matrix-engraving machine and assembled all the tools to begin production of his own typefaces from design to finished product. The Deepdene working conditions enhanced his productivity and from 1925 to 1938 he created some fifty typefaces himself.
On January 26, 1939 the mill at Deepdene burned down. All of his equipment—patterns, matrices, engravers, casting machines, and presses—was lost. The fire was hugely publicized, as Goudy was the most famous type designer in America. However, the terrible loss did not deter Goudy and he continued to work for another ten good years.
Howard Wheeler Coggeshall (1878-1949) began his printing career at a newspaper in Otego, New York. After working as a reporter in Oneonta, New York, and Pittsfield, Massachusetts, he moved in 1905 to Whitesboro, New York and opened a print shop there. He later settled in Utica, New York, and operated his printing company in the Savage Arms Building. Coggeshall was a close friend of Frederic W. Goudy and often printed projects for Goudy with type cast at Goudy’s Village Letter Foundery. As a result Coggeshall was in possession of eleven different Goudy fonts in January 1939 when Goudy's foundry burned. The fonts, dating between 1921 and 1937, became known as the "lost" Goudy types, some of the last of Village Letter Foundery-cast types in large quantities.
24.03 Linear Feet (9 California cases)
Goudy Mediaeval is a black letter typeface created by Frederic W. Goudy and sold by the Village Letter Foundery in 1930.
Type is arranged by letter within point size.
Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
Cary Type Collections consist of relief printing types suitable for use with letterpress printing presses.
Lowenthal Room California cases 2-1 through 2-9
The "Lost Goudy Types" were the property of Howard W. Coggeshall (1878-1949) of Utica, New York, who was a friend and printer for the designer, Frederic W. Goudy. Coggeshall was in possession of several different Goudy-cast typefaces in January 1939 when Goudy's foundry burned, destroying his drawings, patterns, and matrices; the fonts, dating between 1921 and 1937, became known as the "lost" Goudy types. The “Lost Goudy Types” collection was a gift of Marie Coggeshall to RIT School of Printing in 1960. The types were transferred to the Cary Graphic Arts Collection in 2000.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The “Lost Goudy Types” including the Goudy Mediaeval typeface was a gift of Marie Coggeshall to RIT School of Printing in 1960. The types were transferred to the Cary Graphic Arts Collection in 2000.
Goudy Mediaeval specimen
- Goudy Mediaeval specimen, Cary Graphic Arts Image Database
- Bennett, Paul, ed., Goudy's Type Designs: His Story and Specimens, Being a Virtual Facsimile of The Typophiles Chap Books XIII and XIV, A Half-Century of Type Design and Typography, New Rochelle, N.Y.: Myriade Press, 1978, p. 176.
Upper case, lower case, figures, punctuation.
14 pt., 18 pt., 24 pt., 30 pt., 36 pt., 48 pt.
Collection processed by Amelia Hugill-Fontanel, May 2016.
Finding aid encoded by Amelia Hugill-Fontanel, May 2016.
- Finding Aid for the Goudy Mediaeval typeface collection
- Cary Type Collections
- In Progress
- Amelia Hugill-Fontanel
- 4 May 2016
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note