Serial number of 12x18 C&P

Hi All,
My 12x18 New Style Chandler & Price has a serial number of X24. This doesn’t appear on any chart that I’ve seen yet so I thought I’d throw it out to the experts on Briar Press for some insight on how old ‘Bertha’ may be… Any help is greatly appreciated.


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Don’t know why the link didn’t work but you can type it in……

Look on page 3, upper right, under 12X18 Craftsman. Since X100 is listed as 1921, it would be my guess that the list may not be quite accurate. If they started 1921 with X100, your press may have been made in 1920.

Are you absolutely sure you didn’t miss a digit and your press is X124 or X240 something?

Hi Lydia,

We are in a common situation with our 12x18 New Style C&P. Our serial number reads X10. We’re assuming it’s from 1920 but have yet to find any good confirmation of this number. We’re absolutely sure there are no missing digits!

LadyBird Letterpress

Thanks, All. I agree that it seems to be 1920 is the most logical, but it is mysterious that it isn’t in a range on one of these charts. Ray, if you ever solve your mystery, please let me know - maybe they’re cousins :)

I have a nifty pic of the serial number but it won’t let me upload it … At any rate, thanks again!

Lydia, check to make sure the photo’s name is short and doesn’t have any fancy characters like ampersands or colons. Also, there’s a maximum graphic size allowed. Something on the order of 100 kb or so. Check to make sure your file isn’t to large.

Michael Hurley
Titivilus Press
Memphis, TN

Lydia, I’ll let you know if we ever solve the mystery! Cheers.

As it appears that ascertaining the original number is quite important and an interesting scenario, a couple of options for consideration, first Hi-Tech and expensive I.E. Ultra Violet technology will/may show missing, altered, erased numbers, but obviously very expensive, probably not an option???
LOW TECH, well documented on the web, involving *Acid Test* check it out, perhaps!!..

In the U.K. times past, when machinery was uprated/updated by the Original Factory of origin, the original number(s) were erased and substituted, with the prefix *X* and then fewer digits, which invariably remained low as revamped restyled Models , took over… Could this be in Fact the Progression, as in C.& P. Old Style/New Style . Apologies if this has already been, identified and documented.!!!. . Logic might say, that from the original conception to mass production *X* would not have been the natural designation(s) starting point, more like 0001. and counting.…
Ramblings and Apologies

Thanks, Michael - that worked (to make the file really small). So, here’s a pic of the serial number.

And thanks, Ray!

Mick, these are all fascinating options and info … Thanks for your suggestions.

image: Bertha-serial.gif


Just a reality check. Is the serial number located in the upper left corner of the face of the bed on a C&P????? I really never have gone looking for one, but in the back of my mind I thought it was supposed to be in the upper RIGHT corner. That X24 simply does not look like it would be a serial number at all.

Simply asking because I don’t really know.


It is supposed to be in the upper left corner, Rick, just where the photo shows it.

The 12x18 Craftsman presses serial numbers start with ‘X’ though the published lists I know of start with X100 for 1921. Maybe this press shows that the serial number list show the last serial number for a year. Most people have assumed that the number on the lists was the first one made in a year.

Thanks Arie.