Franklin Type Foundry

Iron Hand Press

This press was sold by the Franklin Type Foundry (FTF) sometime around 1860. FTF was founded in 1856 as a branch of L. Johnson & Company (a.k.a. “Johnson Type Foundry") of Philadelphia. It was originally operated by Robert Allison, Charles H. Smith, and Howard L. Johnson (the son of Lawrence Johnson of L. Johnson & Company). At some point Johnson left the firm, and it became known as "Allison & Smith." In 1892, the Franklin Type Foundry was one of the 23 firms that merged to create American Type Founders (ATF). In 1894/95, it was consolidated with the Cincinnati Type Foundry (CTF) to become the Cincinnati branch of ATF.

While we do not know the particular model of this press, it resembles the Washington Presses made by other companies of the era. There is some thought that it may have even been manufactured by the neighboring CTF. The main difference between the typical Washington design is the "elbow" toggle mechanism that appears to be unique to this press.

This press is currently on loan to the CT&PM by Tom and Bonnie Strassell of Glencoe, KY.