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Dan X. Solo

The Solotype Archive was begun in 1942 when I was 14. I was a kid printer for several years before that. At 16, after a quick three months of training, I dropped out of school and went to work full time as a radio actor and announcer in San Francisco. (Easy to get jobs in those days, due to the war-induced manpower shortage.) In 1949 and 1950, I created a magic show which played West Coast theatres with some success. After that, back to broadcasting.

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135 font families by Dan X. Solo

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Farringdon

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Farringdon Farringdon

An old wood type we picked up in London from the Fredrick Ullmer Company. It’s not marked, and we've never seen it in a catalog, so we don't know who made it.

We like it for antique-looking western posters and playbills. We added the lowercase. We have seen it used on British music hall bills.

Quadrille 2

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Quadrille 2 Quadrille 2

This is a simplified Tuscan, free from excessive ruffles and flourishes.

Types of this general design began to appear in profusion in the 1830, and continued as a popular form until the end of the nineteenth century.

We added the lowercase to this one for increased usefulness.

Tally Text

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Tally Text Tally Text

Huron

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Huron Huron

Eccentric™

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Eccentric™ Eccentric™

Dawson

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Dawson Dawson

Master Script

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Master Script Master Script

Tuscan Gothic

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Tuscan Gothic Tuscan Gothic

Goodfellow

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Goodfellow Goodfellow

Seminary

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Seminary Seminary

Vienna

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Vienna Vienna

Webster

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Webster Webster

An ideal face for blocks of copy when you want them to look old. Very readable.

Another faithful rendition of the original from the Keystone foundry. Actually several foundries worldwide offered this font.

Brussels

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Brussels Brussels

The Stephenson Blake foundry in England, made two fonts, Flemish Expanded and Flemish Condensed. In our view, one was too wide, the other too narrow; so we redrew it and renamed it Brussels. Why not? Belgium is one of the few places where you may still hear Flemish spoken.

Illyrian

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Illyrian Illyrian

Our font of the original was only ten point, so we had to use our imagination to a great extent.

As specialists in Victorian typography, we have found that many people do not like the “center alignment” idea, used on several old time faces, but we have been faithful to the original.

Excelsis

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Excelsis Excelsis

This font began life as a metal type called Duerer, from the Boston Type Foundry about 1890. A wood type maker copied it, and that’s where we got it (in Guadalajara, Mexico, already! Some people travel to see the sights; we travel to collect type.)

Valjean

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Valjean Valjean

Penny Arcade

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Penny Arcade Penny Arcade

Grecian

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Grecian Grecian

Gladiate

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Gladiate Gladiate

Memorial

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Memorial Memorial

The Fredrick Ullmer Co. in London acted as agent for many typefoundries, and this was one of their offerings. Some of the letters were rather outlandish, so we fearlessly decided to improve them. The result is this dated but pleasant font.

The original didn't have a lowercase, so we added it.

Marshall

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Marshall Marshall

Bamboo

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Bamboo Bamboo

Gashouse Gang

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Gashouse Gang Gashouse Gang

Diablo

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Diablo Diablo

Cognac

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Cognac Cognac

Many years ago, we bought a bunch of proofs that had apparently come from the defunct Van Loey-Nouri foundry in Belgium. Cognac was an incomplete alphabet among them, which we completed.

Just a guess, but 1910 seems like a probable date for this art nouveau design.

Fairmont

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Fairmont Fairmont

This is one of the Victorian standards for job printing issued by the Barnhart Brothers and Spindler Foundry about 1891. It looks old without being decorative, a good counterpoint to fancier types in today¹s old fashioned typography.

Dime Museum

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Dime Museum Dime Museum

This idea of “wrong way weights” was originally called French Clarendon by the Americans, Italienne by the French, and American by the Italians. Sounds like nobody wanted to own up to it.

When it was revived by ATF in 1933, it was given the name P. T. Barnum. Many variations have appeared.

Fletcher

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Fletcher Fletcher

A special effect type from the French foundry of Beaudoire & Cie.

We changed a couple of characters to improve the overall harmony of the alphabet.

Harmony

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Harmony Harmony

A handsome German art deco design that fits in well with other types of the 1920s and 1930s. Originally without a lowercase, so we drew one for it, extending its usefulness.

Opera House

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Opera House Opera House

Beijing

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Beijing Beijing

One of the many Solotype experiments in developing fonts with an ethnic flavor, this one is a bit less obvious than most. The lowercase seems to work well.

Cleopatra

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Cleopatra Cleopatra

Extravaganza

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Extravaganza Extravaganza

Berolina

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Berolina Berolina

Buddha

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Buddha Buddha

French Ionic

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French Ionic French Ionic

This would be a Clarendon if it weren't for the cute serifs, which set it apart.

Reads well in copy blocks.

Atlantis

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Atlantis Atlantis

Alaska

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Alaska Alaska

Faust Text

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Faust Text Faust Text

Mural

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Mural Mural

Another caps-only font for which we have designed a lowercase. It was originally brought out in smaller sizes for card work, but proved to be so popular that sizes up to 48 point were soon added.

Hattan Antique

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Hattan Antique Hattan Antique

Cigar Label

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Cigar Label Cigar Label

This font was inspired by the embossed lettering on cigar boxes. The letters, or entire words, are often surrounded by raised dots, and that was our idea here. We drew this about 1997, and have been refining it ever since.

All letters are on the lowercase keyboard; the end pieces and spaces are on the caps.

Mozart

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Mozart Mozart

Athena

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Athena Athena

Estienne

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Estienne Estienne

Angel

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Angel Angel

A Light Weight Victorian

Palmetto

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Palmetto Palmetto

Minsky

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Minsky Minsky

Bamberg

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Bamberg Bamberg

Houdini

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Houdini Houdini

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