The ESA Launches Its Silver Anniversary Year
With A Guided Tour Along English Paper Trails

It's not too early for Ephemera Society of America members to reserve 10 days in June for a spectacular visit to England that will include access to some of the world's foremost ephemera collections.

In celebration of its 25th anniversary, the Society has made arrangements to visit Oxford University's Bodleian Library that houses the John Johnson Ephemera Collection, The Reading University Library and the University's Centre for Ephemera Studies with the Rickards Collection, the London Guildhall with its own collection of London-themed ephemera, and the City of London Museum

Dr. Ted Robinson, a veterinarian and Society member who has been arranging and guiding tours to various parts of the world for several years, is developing the itinerary. The trip's cost has yet to be set, but it will include lodging, ground transportation, transfers, some meals, and incidental costs. Because of different arrival and departure dates, transportation will be the traveler's responsibility. Valerie Jackson Harris and other members of The Ephemera Society (our British parent) deserve thanks for making many of the local arrangements.

The trip is built around a core week of ephemera-related events that begin on Monday, June 13 and continue through Friday, June 17. Flexibility is purposely being built into the trip because some travelers may want to arrive the weekend before to take advantage of the year's major book fairs on the weekend of June 11th and 12th, while others may want to stay over the following weekend for England's major ephemera fair of 2005 on June 19th.

The core events scheduled so far are spectacular.

On Tuesday, June 14th, Julie Anne Lambert, librarian of the John Johnson Collection in Oxford's Bodleian Library, will display portions of the collection and speak on its foundation, scope, and access. The collection of about a million items was amassed as a hobby by John de Monins Johnson, an Oxford University Press printer. The core of the collection, divided into 680 subject headings, is composed of 18th, 19th, and early 20th century material, although some pieces date back to 1508. You can learn more about the collection online by visiting

Michael Twyman is scheduled to be the host on Wednesday June 15th as the group visits The University of Reading Library and the Centre for Ephemera Studies with several collections including that of Maurice Rickards. Two other collections at the Centre contain the surviving work of John Soulby, a north-country printer from the early 19th century; and the Kitchin Collection, the surviving work of another north-country printer of the late 19th century. Also housed at the University Library is the Great Exhibition Collection of 1851 that includes a complete set of trade catalogues by companies taking part in the exhibition.

John Fisher, head of prints, maps, and drawings at the London Guildhall, will gather a display of London ephemera including trade cards, invoices and billheads, watchpapers, funeral tickets, Guildhall banquet menus, theatre bills, valentines, and advertisements for freak shows and circuses. Tea will follow the Guildhall tour.

Valerie Jackson Harris will lead the tour of the City of London Museum.

Details of the full itinerary and costs will be mailed to each member in plenty of time to schedule the best ephemera trip in 25 years. Itinerary can be seen online too! >>

   © 2011 The Ephemera Society of America