Discover Historic Bookbinding: Marbled Endsheets

Back in the good ‘ol days of the 19th and 20th century, we decorated the inside covers of our beloved books with wildly colorful papers. Swirls, speckles, wavy lines and crinkled patterns were all used by book binders to ease the transition of a reader’s eyes from the cover of the book to the meat of the book, the textblock. This transition sometimes was decorated, relative to the context of the book. A book about trains might have had some engines merrily chugging across the flyleaf. Other books might have had plain white endsheets, and others wild, splashy, psychedelic colorful swirls.

Innovation Week: Sharing the Delights of Old Books

In the Collection, Preservation & Access Department, we are delighted daily by the craftsmanship and the intricate details of the art of bookbinding. But all these delights have been confined to our little attic lab. So how can we share them with you, our patrons? Recently, CP&A applied for and was awarded a 2016 Innovation Grant with the goal to create an online and in-person exhibit that shares some elements of historic bookbinding found in CLP’s collection.