NICHOLSON, James B. (1820-1901)
A Manual of the Art of Bookbinding: containing Full Instructions in the Different Branches of Forwarding, Gilding, and Finishing. Also, The Art of Marbling Book-Edges and Paper. The whole designed for the Practical Workman, the Amateur, and the Book-Collector
Philadelphia: Henry Carey Baird, 1856. Large 12mo. 318pp. 12 lithographed plates (including frontispiece), seven specimens of marbled paper. Letterpress illustrations. Publisher's catalogue at rear.
Publisher's blindstamped brown cloth, gilt lettered spine.
The first edition of the first major practical bookbinding manual published in America.
James B. Nicholson was born in St. Louis but spent most of his life in Philadelphia, where he learned the trade of bookbinding. He and his business partner James Pawson, an English edge gilder, founded the bookbinding firm Pawson & Nicholson in Philadelphia in 1848 which grew to become distinguished for its quality and value. This book is a comprehensive guide to all the processes and intricacies involved in bookbinding: boarding, clothwork, marbling, colouring, stamping, and more. Written by an expert in the field, it was the first book published in America to deal with the technical and artistic aspects of bookbinding.