Covering Print Magazine, 1940-1953

The magazine we all call Print has had a half dozen different names since its inception in June of 1940. It was originally a limited-edition periodical that discussed the endless techniques used in the graphic arts industry, and even included original prints and tipped-in features within. From its first edition up to Volume VII, Number 6, in March 1953, it was a 7 1/4-by-10-inch journal-sized publication. This article will be the first of several covering the initial 13 years of the magazine’s existence. This week’s will begin with the covers, and subsequent pieces will follow with reviews of each issue’s contents, as well example of the slipcase binders that the publication offered to its subscribers.

William Edwin Rudge was the publication’s original publisher and managing editor. He was the third generation of a family of printers (all named William Edwin Rudge), and he worked out of his publishing business office in New Haven, Connecticut. From the first issue in 1940 through Volume VI, Number 4, the publication was called Print: A Quarterly Journal Of The Graphic Arts. Beginning with the following edition, Volume VII, Number 1, it changed its name to Print after combining its previous title with another magazine called The Print Collector’s Quarterly. Rudge continued as the publisher and managing editor, but the publishing office had moved to Burlington, Vermont, with the editorial offices in Hartsdale, New York. By the spring of 1953, Rudge was the president/editor, and the publishing and editorial offices had moved to 17 West 44th Street in Manhattan.

Volume 1, Number 1. Cover by Howard Trafton.

An editorial introduction to the journal’s mission (with an interesting mention of television in the footnote)

Volume 1, Number 2

Volume 1, Number 3. Silk-screen wrap-around cover by Lee Maril.

As an example of the magazine’s limited-edition nature, here’s another version of the VI#3 cover. The handmade silk-screen technique resulted in each cover being unique.

Volume 1, Number 4. Cover by W. A. Dwiggins.

Volume II, Number 1. Cover by William Metzig.

Volume II, Number 2. Cover by Fritz Eichenberg.

Volume II, Numbers 3 and 4. Cover (lithograph in two colors) by Hugo Steiner-Prag.

Volume III, Number 1. Cover (offset lithography) by Jean Carlu.

Volume III, Number 2. Cover by William J. Schaldach.

Volume III, Number 3. Cover by Thoreau MacDonald.

Volume III, Number 4. Cover by Hugo Steiner-Prag.

Volume IV, Number 1. Cover by William G. Meek.

Volume IV, Number 2. Cover map of Nagasaki from the Army Map Service.

Volume IV, Number 3. Cover label by William G. Meek.

Volume IV, Number 4. Cover illustration (“The Zamba”) by F. Molina Campos.

Volume V, Number 1. Cover by Thoreau MacDonald.

Volume V, Number 2. Cover by Sven Jansen.

Volume V, Number 3. Cover by Alex Steinweiss.

Volume V, Number 4. Cover by Imrie Reiner.

Volume VI, Number 1. Cover by Thoreau MacDonald.

Volume VI, Number 2. Cover by Frank Lieberman.

Volume VI, Number 3. Cover by Frank Lieberman.

Volume VI, Number 4. Cover by Joseph Low.

Volume VII, Number 1. Cover by Eric Fraser.

Volume VII, Number 2. Cover montage by Hans J. Barschel.

Volume VII, Number 3. Cover by George A. Shealy.

Volume VII, Number 4. Cover (printed on wood veneer) by Andrew Szoeke.

Volume VII, Number 5. Cover by Richard Sherman.

Volume VII, Number 6. Cover by Bruce Beck.

Stay tuned to Imprint for my upcoming articles profiling in detail the early phase of this classic graphic arts resource!

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At MyDesignShop.com, order recent back issues of Print—or download digital versions going back to 2007. 

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