Vermont Autograph and Remarker (VT, 1871)

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Publication History:

Place of Publication: Starksborough,Vermont

Frequency: Unknown

Volume and Issue Data: November 6, 1871

Size and Format:  about 7′ x 4 l/2″

Editor/Publisher:  James Johns

Title Changes and Continuation:  According to the front page story in the Vermont Autograph and Remarker, the editor also wrote the Huntington Gazette when he was 13 years old (March 1810).  He altered the title of this paper “as fancy dictated.”

General Description and Notes:

The paper is very neatly written in scripted print.  On the first page James Johns writes:

“It cannot well escape the notice of an observing eye that the Autograph is, as the title indicates, a manuscript production, being executed with a pen by hand.  consequently it may well be supposed what is the fact, that such a mode of issue does not admit of multiplying copies like the press and types, one at a time being all that I undertake to get out at once.  This I am generally able to accomplish in little more than half a day with close application.  The matter is all written down on the columns directly from the dictates of my mind.  The papers’ so issued I mostly send off by mail to either publishers.”

According to the editor of the Proceedings of the Vermont Historical Society, Vol. IV, No. 2 (New Series), 1936, pp 69-70, the editor of the Autograph, James John was born in Huntington, VT, September 26, 1797.

“As early as 1834, he pen-printed a newspaper, the Vermont Autograph and Remarker; each issue included five or six articles, totaling about fifteen hundred words–every letter printed by hand.  He continued the Autograph until three months before his death [1867, age 76].  His pen-printed material consists of historical items, essays, fiction, poems, and political statistics.”

Information Sources:

Bibliography:  Robert W. G. Vail, “Bibliography of the Writings of James Johns,” Monograph on James Johns [The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America,  Vol. 27, Part 2, 1933]; cited in Proceedings of the Vermont Historical Society, 1936, “James Johns, Vermont Pen Printer,” Vol. IV, No. 2, pages 69-71

Locations: Vermont Historical Society Library, Montpelier, VT;  Newspapers and Periodicals, American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, MA

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Huntington Gazette (VT, 1810)

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Publication History:

Place of Publication: Huntington,Vermont

Frequency: Unknown

Volume and Issue Data:  March, 1810.  No known extant copies.

Size and Format: Brown wrapping paper, 7 inches by 4 1/2 inches, one side only

Editor/Publisher:  James Johns

Title Changes and Continuation: Vermont Autograph and Remarker

General Description and Notes:

James Johns describes this paper on the front page of his later manuscript paper, Vermont Autograph and Remarker of November 6, 1871:  “Should it be asked how long it is since I first took up this notion of a pen-printed newspaper, I answer that my first essay at it bore date back as earlly as March, 1810, I being then in my 13th year.  It was executed on a piece of brown wrapping paper nearly the size of this [approx. 7″ x 4 l/2”] when spread open, and printed on one side only and bore the title of Huntington Gazette; (I then lived in Huntington, the town next north by east of this.)  After that I used white writing paper, and sometimes altered the title as fancy dictated.  I have [end of page] . . .”

Information Sources:

Bibliography:  “James John, Vermont Pen Printer,” Proceedings of the Vermont Historical Society, New Series, 4:2 (1936), pp. 69-71

Link: The American Antiquarian Society, Amateur Newspapers Collection

Locations:  No known copies exist.  (Dennis R. Laurie, Assistant to the Curator of Newspapers and Periodicals, American Antiquarian Society, 185 Salisbury St., Worceseter, MA  01609-1634.  Phone 508/755-5221.)

Green Mountain Miscellany or Huntington Magazine (VT, 1834)

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Publication History:

Place of Publication: Huntington, Vermont

Frequency: Unknown

Volume and Issue Data: October 10, 1834

Size and Format: Unknown

Editor/Publisher:  James Johns

Title Changes and Continuation: Huntington Magazine

General Description and Notes:

The earliest extant issue of a pen-printed amateur newspaper.

Information Sources:

Bibliography: None

Locations:  American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, MA

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