Handcrafted Auction Discovery
I went to an auction with my mother Saturday evening and was able to get this book for $5.00. Well, actually $5.75 with the 10% Buyer’s Premium (13% if you aren’t paying with cash) and 5% Sales Tax. You will always pay more than what you have bid. It’s true.
I wish that I could say that I knew ahead of time that this item was going to be at the auction, but I can’t. I wish I could say that I knew ahead of time who Elbert Hubbard was, but I can’t. My interest was captured by “Roycroft Press.”
Being familiar with Roycroft furniture from the Arts and Crafts Period, I can however say that this was an item I wanted! Its worn but treasured appearance really spoke to me. The decorative emblem on the cover and the hand binding were additional carefully crafted details. Nobody else wanted it.
Elbert Hubbard visited England in 1892 where he met William Morris who greatly influenced his ideas. After returning to New York, no one would publish his work so he just started publishing himself by founding Roycroft Press, named after two English publishers whose name means “King’s Craft,” indicating high craftsmanship.
A quotation from painter John Ruskin provided the Roycrofter Creed:
“A belief in working with the head, hand and heart and mixing enough play with the work so that every task is pleasurable and makes for health and happiness.”
Now I just need to build a coffee table to go under this handsome book since that seems to be the Hubbard and Roycrofter thing to do!
http://www.roycroftcampuscorporation.com/ Roycroft Campus Corporation website.
http://www.gutenberg.org/ Project Gutenberg website. Search for “Elbert Hubbard” and download eBooks for free. (These can be opened in iBooks on iPhone or iPad.)