It is not a good year for the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum. After having been flooded at the beginning of May, now its unique collection has to find a new home, and fast. Indeed, Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum will no longer reside in the building that bears its name. The property owners recently informed the museum that the 1619 Jefferson St. building in Two Rivers, Wisconsin will close and must be vacated, perhaps as early as February 2013.
Hamilton Wood Type is urgently seeking donations to address this sudden need and to protect its vast collection of wood type, antique printing equipment and rare type specimen catalogues. The museum’s director Jim Moran, artistic director Bill Moran and assistant director Stephanie Carpenter remain committed to transitioning to a new space. Says Jim Moran:
We are definitely moving and will be staying in Two Rivers. Unfortunately, the hopes of staying in the Hamilton building are not an option. It will be an important break in continuity for Hamilton as a manufacturer going back to 1880. However, this is an opportunity to find a location where we can better protect, preserve, organize and demonstrate this enormous and valuable collection.
Moran estimates it will require at least $ 250,000 and an army of volunteers to physically move the millions of pieces of type, plates, presses, tools and raw materials. He adds, “We are humbly, but aggressively asking for cash donations.”
Donors already have pledged more than $ 65,000. Contributions may be made online on the Hamilton Wood type & Printing Museum website.
When a final date has been determined, workshops and other events at the museum will cease at least one month prior to the move. Hamilton Wood Type intends to host a farewell party with celebrated authors, professors and practitioners among the guest speakers. Hamilton will publish key dates for the move and volunteer opportunities as they are established.