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Lanston Type Company

The Lanston Monotype Company was founded in Philadelphia at the end of the nineteenth century by Tolbert Lanston. In 1887 he received his first patent for a mechanical typesetting device. Later refinements led to the Monotype casting machine and the emergence of the Lanston Monotype Company as one of the most renowned type supply companies in the world. The Monotype caster was revolutionary and along with other automated typesetting machines helped to usher in a new age of printing technology. Typesetting had, until this time, remained the same as Gutenberg’s first hand-set movable type.

In the late 1800s, Tolbert Lanston licensed his technology to an English sister company and became a major international force, competing with the Mergenthaler company, whose “Linotype” was a slightly different approach to the same problem. Both cast type from molten lead alloy on demand, fresh for each job, then recycled it. But whereas the Linotype cast whole lines (or ‘slugs’) at a time, the Monotype cast single letters, composing them into a page with an action that is a joy to behold. (Since they produce individual pieces of type, Monotype machines can also be used to make type for hand composing.)

Lanston Monotype grew rapidly with America’s pre-eminent type designer Frederic Goudy as art director from 1920 to 1947. The type library was directed by Sol Hess, who also designed some of the typefaces.

The Philadelphia-based company eventually parted ways with its English counterpart. The thriving English Monotype became simply known as Monotype. By contrast Lanston went through mixed fortunes and lost ground to Mergenthaler. A long-lasting labor dispute interfered with production and servicing of the Monomatic – an “absolutely incredible typesetting machine” according to the man who would later own the company, master printer Gerald Giampa. Customers were upset, and the firm was sold on several times until American Type Founders bought it in 1969. Giampa continues the story: “They stopped manufacturing casters because they had always competed with their foundry sales. Then it became a department of Hartzel Machine Works that also manufactured moulds and re-built casters. Then on to Mackenzie and Harris, a type foundry in San Francisco, then purchased by myself and re-located in Vancouver. A little known fact this is the second time that Lanston has been Canadian-based. Once previous to ATF.” Giampa moved Lanston to Prince Edward Island in 1988.

Lanston continued supplying the American market for monotype casters until January 21, 2000, when the hot-metal component of Lanston was tragically destroyed by a tidal wave. After this time Giampa, who was one of the earliest developers of PostScript fonts, focussed much more on digitization. Under his stewardship, Lanston’s classic faces were digitized in a style that was true to the sources, which are the brass and lead patterns from which the metal type was made. The company relocated to Finland, then back to Canada.

In November 2004 P22 type foundry of Buffalo, NY acquired Lanston Type. P22 studios will re-master Lanston’s fonts, including the classic designs of Frederic Goudy and Sol Hess, along with newer designs by such contemporary masters as Jim Rimmer, Dave Farey, and Gerald Giampa himself. The addition of Lanston type fills a gap for text fonts in the P22 type libraries which, until now, have focused on display and decorative types. Lanston is a distinct division of P22 alongside International House of Fonts (IHOF) and the Sherwood Collection.

71 font families from Lanston Type Company

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Six big juicy steaks sizzled in a pan as five workmen left the quarry.
LTC Bodoni 175™ LTC Bodoni 175™

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Jeez, by TV film Schwarzkopf expunged Iraq.
LTC Caslon™ LTC Caslon™
LTC Caslon™ LTC Caslon™
LTC Caslon™ LTC Caslon™
LTC Caslon™ LTC Caslon™

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ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
LTC Goudy Initials™ LTC Goudy Initials™
LTC Goudy Initials™ LTC Goudy Initials™

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ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
LTC Record Title™ LTC Record Title™

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Big July earthquakes confound zany experimental vow.
LTC Pabst Oldstyle™ LTC Pabst Oldstyle™

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A good quick jab of a pen may vex Will Shortz.
LTC Cloister™ LTC Cloister™

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Quickly Shortz dreams up a few vexing jumbles.
LTC Goudy Oldstyle™ LTC Goudy Oldstyle™

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Ebenezer unexpectedly bagged two tranquil aardvarks with his jiffy vacuum cleaner.
LTC Goudy Heavyface™ LTC Goudy Heavyface™

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Quick wafting zephyrs vex bold Jim.
LTC Squareface™ LTC Squareface™

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The July sun caused a fragment of pine wax to ooze on the black velvet quilt.
LTC Italian Old Style™ LTC Italian Old Style™

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The five boxing wizards jump quickly.
LTC Hess Monoblack™ LTC Hess Monoblack™

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Five big quacking zephyrs jolt my wax bed.
LTC Vine Leaves™ LTC Vine Leaves™

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Beloved Groucho joked with a mix of zany quips.
LTC Garamont™ LTC Garamont™

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Quick zephyrs blow, vexing daft Jim.
LTC Deepdene™ LTC Deepdene™

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Gorbachev’s quixotic plan fazed jumpy hawks.
LTC Circled Caps™ LTC Circled Caps™
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Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow.
LTC Broadway™ LTC Broadway™

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Many-wived Jack laughs at probes of sex quiz.
LTC Goudy Ornate™ LTC Goudy Ornate™

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ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
LTC Octic Gothic™ LTC Octic Gothic™

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The vixen jumped quickly on her foes barking with zeal.
LTC Remington Typewriter™ LTC Remington Typewriter™

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The job of waxing linoleum frequently peeves chintzy kids.
LTC Kennerley™ LTC Kennerley™

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Jeez, by TV film Schwarzkopf expunged Iraq.
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Mix Zapf with Veljovic and get quirky beziers.
LTC Ornamental Initials™ LTC Ornamental Initials™

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Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow.
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Two hardy boxing kangaroos jet from Sydney to Zanzibar on quicksilver pinions.
LTC Spire™ LTC Spire™

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A quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.
LTC Bodoni 26™ LTC Bodoni 26™
LTC Bodoni 26™ LTC Bodoni 26™

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Questions of a zealous nature have become by degrees petty waxen jokes.
LTC Californian™ LTC Californian™

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Playing jazz vibe chords quickly excites my wife.
LTC Bodoni Bold™ LTC Bodoni Bold™

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Jack amazed a few girls by dropping the antique onyx vase!
LTC Fournier Le Jeune™ LTC Fournier Le Jeune™

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Putin backs away from Iraq zeal; Bush, vexed, jogs.
LTC Goudy Open™ LTC Goudy Open™

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King Alexander was just partly overcome after quizzing Diogenes in his tub.
LTC Glamour™ LTC Glamour™

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Quick wafting zephyrs vex bold Jim.
LTC Goudy Thirty™ LTC Goudy Thirty™

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Quickly Shortz dreams up a few vexing jumbles.
LTC Camelot™ LTC Camelot™

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ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
LTC Jacobean Initials™ LTC Jacobean Initials™

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Brawny gods just flocked up to quiz and vex him.
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What deaf banjo player gives Max Planck quartz?
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Sympathizing would fix Quaker objectives.
LTC Nicolas Cochin™ LTC Nicolas Cochin™

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Wavy Jake’s fat zebra had Mexican pig liquor.
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My expensive quartz watch once belonged to JFK.
LTC Goudy Modern™ LTC Goudy Modern™

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Viewing quizzical abstracts mixed up hefty jocks.
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Jeez, by TV film Schwarzkopf expunged Iraq.
LTC Goudy Text™ LTC Goudy Text™
LTC Goudy Text™ LTC Goudy Text™

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Jim just quit and packed extra heavy bags for Liz Owen.
LTC Village No 2™ LTC Village No 2™

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Verbatim reports were quickly given by Jim Fox to his amazed audience.
LTC Fleurons Rogers™ LTC Fleurons Rogers™

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Murky haze enveloped a city as jarring quakes broke fourty-six windows.
LTC Flash™ LTC Flash™

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Barkeep! A flaming tequila swizzle and a vodka and Ajax, hold the cherry.
LTC Powell™ LTC Powell™

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Perhaps President Clinton’s amazing sax skills will be judged quite favorably.
LTC Metropolitan™ LTC Metropolitan™

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Verbatim reports were quickly given by Jim Fox to his amazed audience.
LTC Goudy Handtooled™ LTC Goudy Handtooled™

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Sympathizing would fix Quaker objectives.
LTC Keystone Ornaments™ LTC Keystone Ornaments™

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Astronaut Quincy B. Zack defies gravity with six jet fuel pumps.
LTC Law Italic™ LTC Law Italic™

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Then a cop quizzed Mick Jagger’s ex-wives briefly.
LTC Creepy Ornaments™ LTC Creepy Ornaments™

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King Alexander was just partly overcome after quizzing Diogenes in his tub.
LTC Ornaments Two™ LTC Ornaments Two™