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It is with great sadness that we share with you the news of the sudden passing of Chesapeake member Erik Delfino over the past weekend. Many of you will remember his gentle manner, his enthusiasm for photography, history and fine print, as expressed through the lovely work that he shared with us, including his most recent edition about Railways and Rail Stations of the New Jersey Transit Raritan line, which was acquired by the Rare Book Division of the Library of Congress, and Peace Through Understanding: The 50th Anniversary of the 1964/65 New York World’s Fair. Erik had begun work on another book about his experience recovering from a stroke; and with Beth Curren, was in the process of designing a book arts class for people with disabilities.

Erik was retired as Librarian Specialist for Technology Policy Directorate in the Library of Congress, was part of the Art and the Book Program at the Corcoran, a past Vice President of the Chesapeake Chapter of the American Printing History Association, a professor in History of the Book at Catholic University, and Director at Large for the DC Chapter of the National Railway Society, and Chairman of its Library Committee, member of Studio Gallery, and a founding member of the Aphasia Tunes choir.

A celebration of Erik Christopher Delfino’s life will take place take place this coming Friday, January 17th, 10:00 a.m., at the Calvary Lutheran Church, 9545 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910.


Conestoga Press and Ephrata Cloister Printing Office

Our first chapter event of 2020 is shaping up to be a full day of interesting sites and activities.

Ephrata, Pennsylvania has a rich history of printing, starting with the largest book printed in the colonies, the Martyrs Mirror, which was printed at the Ephrata Cloister in the 1740s. According to Wikipedia, it took 15 men three years to finish the 1,512 page book. Next to the Bible, the Martyrs Mirror has historically held the most significant and prominent place in Amish and Mennonite homes.

Join us to visit this state historical site with its 1803 Ouram wooden press.

APHA member Conestoga Press, located just up the street from the Ephrata Cloister, will host participants as they print on an 1850 wrought iron Bronstrup press using type from that period. Conestoga Press is part of the Historical Society of the Cocalico Valley where we’ll also be able to tour their museum.

With a micro-brewery across the street, a printer at Conestoga Press who also brews press-named beers, and a printing themed restaurant just up the street we’re having a hard time deciding on lunch, but we’ll come up with something special.

The activities will begin in Ephrata at 10:00 a.m. and finish between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. depending on the final agenda. Since it would be best to keep the size of our group to about a dozen people please email Chris Sweterlitsch as soon as possible to claim a spot. Chris will also be facilitating carpooling, so please let him know if you need, or can provide a ride.

Chesapeake Chapter Notes

Chesapeake Chapter Notes is emailed monthly to members and friends of the Chesapeake Chapter of the American Printing History Association. Contributions are welcome and can be sent to George Barnum, Chapter Secretary.