How old is our Printing Press?

Our museum has a printing press , that was used for newspaper printing. The Chandler & Price Co., Cleveland, Ohio is the maker, but were would we find out how old the printing press is? We found numbers on different parts, I guess for replacement of parts. I posted a picture of it. Yes, already found the web-site of “The Chandler & Price Co”, but did not reconize our press as any of them.
Any help would be appreciated. We are renovating our building, so it is sitting outside.

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Evidently the picture did not post — check your filename, as it can not include special characters. Also more info about your museum and location would be helpful.


Where would you find the serial number on a printing press? Is there a certain spot to look for it? It was used for a newspaper printing, so we are looking to tie it to our community. Thanks for any help.

It would be indeed unusual for a newspaper to be printed on a C&P press. The photo would give further clues, but most newspapers would have been produced using cylinder presses (sheetfed) or web-fed presses with at least a 24”-30” wide web of paper minimum. The cylinder presses which C&P built were meant for job printing as were all the platen presses (including a 14’x22” press which could have printed a small format newspaper, I suppose).

It is most likely that the C&P was not used for the newspaper printing, but may well have been owned by the publisher to do either job printing in support of the paper (flyers, cards, etc.) or in a full job shop owned by the publisher of the paper.

I guess John Boy Walton published a “newspaper” on a platen job press on the “Waltons” TV series, but that would be the exception indeed.

John Henry
Cedar Creek Press

The serial number on the C&P Platen presses is on the upper left corner of the bed (where the type form would be polaced for printing).

John Henry

I don’t know why the picture is no showing up? Still trying, but I can tell you our museum purchased two camera ( 1917 circa) and this printing press from a old newspaper.
Now the press looks alot like the “ARAB” circa 1959 No. 34 listed on website of letter press printing. Called the Improved Arab Platen circa 1959 Great Britain.

The wheel is solid with four holes in it. Hope that helps.
The Sutherland Springs Historical Museum in South Texsas.

okay I will post all the pictures of the printing press on our website. I will create a page called ” First Newspaper in Wilson County”.

Sutherland Springs TX is a pretty small town according to the map in Street Atlas USA, so it is entirely possible that the town’s newspaper was small enough to have been printed on a C&P (depending on the size of the C&P! ;-). With 4 holes in the flywheel I will venture a guess that it is a New Style C&P with a flywheel plate (whatever the official name for that part is) for safety per early OSHA. If it is an Arab it would be interesting to know why it is there when there were so many well-made US presses more readily available.


It’s a 12x18 Chandler and Price Craftsman with Automatic Feeder. That flywheel with the holes is probably solid and that guard laying across the top of the press is meant to shield the drive pulley on the right side of the press. It looks pretty complete (fountain, gear guards, etc.) but the rust is pretty serious.

The serial number would be on the top and top left of the chase bed (currently under the tarp). If you can find a number we can give you a year of manufacture.

Hope that helps,

There was a number on the upper left side, kinda under the round table ( which we measurer at 20 inches).

Now there was a electric box we uncovered, it said Cline Electric MFG Co. Serial # 29796

Under the flat table in the middle of the press was:
Cleveland & Price
Patent applied for.
Hope this does it, plus go look at the pictures on web-site.
Oh, Sutherland Springs was the county seat(fought over a few times and lost the election, so now we have a ghost town) . There were crowds of 5,000 just to come on weekends to our 100 park and springfed swimming. During the early 1900’s the town was booming.
Thanks everyone for the help!

Looks like RD143 would have been manufactured in 1934.

Are you going to bring it inside and clean it up?


What you have there is indeed a platen press - however, Chandler & Price did manufacture some flatbed presses in their past. A C&P flatbed could indeed be used to print a newspaper.

Platen presses were also found in many news paper plants - not to print the newspaper, but to do “job work” which helped pay the bills. A complete newspaper plant would likely have included both a flatbed press for the newspaper and a platen press for job work.

Then again, C&P Platens have also been used to print newspapers as well. There was at least one town in South or Central America (perhaps Mexico), where the sheets were pre-folded to fit into the press, then refolded to print the other panels. I believe that this technique was also practiced in India - and would make sense just about anywhere in the world where other options were limited.

A slow process, indeed, but it could be done - and it most certainly has been done.

But, for me, I’d prefer to print a news paper on a flatbed cylinder press… - Like Jimmy & his father did at The Garfield Messenger in NJ from 1953 through 2009 - see the video -

Thank you all for the help. So, do you all agree that the press is a 1934 12x18 Chandler & Price Craftsman with an Automatic Feeder?

I am very pleased with the rapid responses.
Yes, we want to place the press in a structure. We will need the equipment to move it also. Just thank you all again for your insight and sharing of your knowledge of printing presses.

Sandra Shaw

When i saw the pictures my heart sank and my jaw hit the floor.

Such a shame to see a press in that state. It’s like watching that commercial with Sarah McLachlan about adopting and helping rescue dogs.

It about brought a tear to my eye.

I hope the press isnt to far gone to get it back to its original glory.