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Herman Ihlenburg (1843-1905)

Born in Berlin, Germany, Herman Ihlenburg took an early interest in drawing and engraving. Aged 14, he was apprenticed to the Trowtzsch & Son type foundry in Berlin. Once he had completed his apprenticeship, he moved to Dresden to work as a seal engraver. He then moved to Prague to work as a punch cutter. Temporary positions with the Flinsch foundry in Frankfurt, Battenburg in Paris and Basle's Berlin foundry followed.

In 1866, he moved to Philadelphia, in the USA, to work for L Johnson & Co (which later become MacKellar, Smiths, & Jordan and was amalgamated to form American Type Founders in 1901). He spent 30 years there, designing type and cutting punches. He began a revival in border ornaments with his Drapery Borders; after this, he designed over 30 ornamental and border faces. During his career he created more than 80 typefaces. He died in Philadelphia.

[LC, December 2009]

Fonts designed by Herman Ihlenburg

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