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Microfilm Research Collections: Bowyer Ledgers

Bowyer Ledgers

Location: Microfiche cabinet 42-B.

Scope: Reproduces in full four ledgers of the Bowyer printing house of London, a major firm at the heart of the British book trade in the 18th century. The Bowyers did a wide variety of work, ranging from major books and publications of the House of Commons and the Royal Society to advertising ephemera. Ledgers A and B record customer accounts, noting the bookseller, author, or whoever ordered the work, the format, the type used, collation, charge for printing, date of payment, and other details of the job. Ledger P keeps tally of the amount of paper ordered and the number of printed sheets sent to the binder. Ledger C records piece-work wages paid to compositors and pressmen. Miscellaneous other records of the firm--bills, receipts, other accounts, etc., are included. The ledgers are useful not only for printing and publishing history and bibliography, but for business and social history.

How to search the collection: The collection is comprised of the printing accounts of William Bowyer, father and son, reproduced on microfiche, with a checklist of Bowyer printing, 1699-1777, a commentary, indexes, and appendixes. To find items in this collection consult the 616 page printed guide on the Multimedia Index Table. The 70 microfiche packets are in cabinet 42-B.

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