1930s works progress administration plaque

brett jordan's picture

Found on a bridge in Maine, built by the WPA as part of Roosevelt's 'New deal'.

had a look around the web, but there doesn't seem to have been a 'standard' typeface

this one is lovely, does anyone know its origins?

all the best

brett

oldnick's picture

Back in Ye Olden Tymes, when people did hand lettering, there was an abundance of instructional books for aspiring artists, and there was a lot of "borrowing" among the various authors. The earliest "probable influence" I can find in my collection is an undated (but probably early 30s) version of "abc of Lettering" by Carl Holmes. This is called a "moderne" style and, with the exception of the truncation of the bottom strokes on the 3 and 5, the letterforms pretty much match an alphabet on page 21.

brett jordan's picture

thank you old nick, thank you very much indeed

brett

brett jordan's picture

i've ordered the book via amazon.co.uk... however, if you had a scan/photo of p21, that would be fantastic!

brett

brett jordan's picture

actually, scratch that, found p21 on the interweb :-)

http://opera78.livejournal.com/163068.html

oldnick's picture

The book shown is a different edition (there were SEVERAL over the course of thirty or more years). The alphabet I was referring to is on page 36 of this edition.

brett jordan's picture

ok... thanks oldnick... i was wondering :-)

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