When the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum saw 8,000 gallons of water flood a portion of its outdated, industrial Two Rivers, Wis., location last summer, fundraising bought the world’s largest fully-functioning wood type workshop some time.
But now the museum is being forced to relocate its 1.5 million-piece wood type collection. And tonight, it’s turning again to fundraising to make that possible.
Lovers of old-school printing are invited to join AIGA Wisconsin at the Milwaukee Public Market garden area for a poster sale, party and special screening of Typeface, a film about the Hamilton Museum.
Every penny of the $20 registration fee will directly support the relocation of the museum, which is nearing the $200,000 mark in its fundraising. Tonight’s event is the last chance for the museum to reach its goal of $250,000 by January 31.
Founded in 1880 by Ed Hamilton, J.E. Hamilton Holly Wood Type Co. was once the largest wood type producer in the country. The company made wood type for posters, newspapers and for-sale signs until 1917, when it switched to using steel.
Since then, wood type has gone from practical to artistic, and the Hamilton Museum has embraced that transition. The museum – which remained free to visitors even after last summer’s devastating downpour – left its workshop drawers of wood type open to wannabe printers up until its recent closing. Some of the carefully carved letters and images in its inventory are 70 to 80 years old.
If it reaches its goal, the museum hopes to reopen this summer at a new Two Rivers location.
Register for the event here.
Image courtesy of the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum.