Blades, East and Blades, founded in 1821 as printers of ledgers and fiscal documents, printed postage stamps and postal stationery for The North Borneo (Chartered) Company from 1883 until 1894. They were better known as printers of bank notes from early days, cheques and fiscal instruments in special fugitive inks, for which they held important patents.
The company started in St Dunstan’s Hill, a few hundred yards from No. 11 and later 17 and 23 Abchurch Lane, as ancient neighbours of No. 15, now the headquarters of the Royal Philatelic Society London.
Blades was amalgamated in 1927 with McCorquodale, the Liverpool printer of air letters and postal cards in the 1940s and 1950s, and continued to print cheques under its own name until the 1960s.
William Blades (1824-1890) is well known amongst Librarians. He published a number of seminal works on The Life and Typography of William Caxton, The Enemies of Books, and Books in Chains, and amassed a library of early printed books which is held in a specially built room at the St Brides Foundation, just off Fleet Street.
Peter’s presentation explains, to some degree, what an exciting site the Royal found somewhat serendipitously, and will interest not only members of the Royal but bank note, cheque and book collectors too.
This event was held live via Zoom. The video recording of the event is available from this website page (Meeting Videos above) for RPSL Members Only.