Wood type identification

Recently found some complete wood type fonts with a manufacturers mark of either CW or GW ( sorry…imprint was difficult to read). I am familiar with the standards i.e. Hamilton,Page,Tubbs, Cooley, etc. but haven’t come across this mark yet. Any help would be appreciated.

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I think that Kelly said that he attributed the “CW” mark to an early Cooley cutting (prior to 1859), but I don’t have the reference handy. I had only a few faces, with that mark, and I added them in with Cooley’s types, in my specimen books. Here is one face (Tuscan Italian), which may have originated with the Bill Brothers, but was also cut by Cooley:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/3962333906/in/album-721576224...
Dave Greer

Thanks for the info. If you or any others happen to verify the reference please post. I will try to locate the font in my cabinet and get some pics!!

Hi, it is a mystery to all of us! Here is a pic of the exact same manufacturer stamp from my collection:
This in turn has a link to another person on Flickr with same stamp!

Like a jigsaw puzzle, you may possibly have the answer in front of you. Dave mentions that it is possibly an early Cooley stamp. Cooley had the unique quirk that his fonts had an extra “5” in them - two of every other numeral, and three “5”s. if you can see that in any of your CW fonts, that would be the missing link.

Cooley also cut his “Q”s a little differently. So post up some pics, and let us know about the 5’s


Extremely interesting thread. I’d like to add a little bit to the comment about Cooley having an extra 5 in his fonts. Dave Greer pointed out to me many years ago that a LOT of antique wood type fonts have an additional 8. The reason for this is that you need at least three 8s to print the date 1888. I always thought that tidbit to be fairly neat.


Be back at the shop tomorrow and will post some pics.
Thanks to all that have included some input.

One of the most important pages, for verifying the scheme of Cooley’s fonts, is the photograph, taken by Nick Sherman, of the only known Cooley Specimen, located at the Newberry Library, in Chicago. See:
It can be seen, if the image is magnified, that fonts containing figures do have 3-1; 3-5; and 5-0, while there are only 2 of the other figures. AE-1; ae-1 and OE-1; oe-1, were also included in his fonts. The exact date of the specimen is not known, but it may be 1859—60. as stated in Kelly. My suspicion about the need for the extra 5, at the time, was that it was to allow for printing the day of the month, as well as the year, in 1855.
I could not find any reference, in Kelly, for the C.W., so it may remain a mystery.
I wrote about the scheme, of unmarked Cooley fonts, in the 1982 issue of APA’s Treasure Gems, just from observation of those fonts in my possession, at the time.
Dave Greer

Here are some pics of the C.W. font. The capital A, small a, and numeral 1 all have the C.W. mark. 72pt.
Sorry that we cannot test the three “5s” theory as the figure set is incomplete. If you need further info let me know. Maybe a comparison to Cooley or contemporaries can shed some light on this. Still checking other drawers as I think I have another set with the same markings.
Larry 516-633-5107 text/cell

image: cw5.JPG


image: cw4.JPG


image: cw3.JPG


image: cw2.JPG


image: cw1.JPG


Thanks for showing the photos of the font. The only face that I can compare it to is the one on page 271, in Kelly, of Ionic Condensed. I suspect that the Kelly showing, attributed to Page, is incorrect, if the AE character goes with the font, since Page never cut those. Comparing the scheme of your font to a 4A font, by Cooley, is fairly close, but since there is only one figure 5, that Cooley clue can’t help. That’s about all that I can add.
Dave Greer