"Our Tools of Learning" : George Arthur Plimpton's Gifts to Columbia University

Handwriting > Page 5


Spencerian Key to Practical Penmanship

New York: Ivison, Blakeman, Taylor & Co., 1866

Plimpton A091 1866 Sp33

The Spencerian Key includes an overview of the Spencerian system of penmanship, with a lecture on the history of penmanship given by Platt Rogers Spencer, who had died in 1864. The lecture was the touchstone of a pamphlet war between the Spencerians and Payson, Dunton & Scribner, the latter accusing the former of plagiarizing from B. F. Foster others. After P. R. Spencer’s death, five of his six sons and a number of close associates continued the firm.

Gift of George Arthur Plimpton


Gaskell’s Complete Compendium of Elegant Writing: Comprised in a New Series of Copy-Slips, with Ample Instructions for Use by Private Learners and Pupils or Business Colleges, Academies and District Schools…Eleventh Edition

Manchester, N. H.: Published at [Gaskell’s Bryant & Stratton] College, 1876

Plimpton A091 1876 G21

The “Beautiful Copy-Slips” contained in the envelope shown here include examples of “Ladies’ hand,” “Business hand, and “Old English,” and “German Text.”

Gift of George Arthur Plimpton


Handwriting for the Broad-Edge Pen; a Teachers' Manual

Boston, New York [etc.]: Ginn & Company, [1926]

Plimpton A090.1 1926 M78


Autograph letter, signed, to George A. Plimpton

New York, August 18, 1926

Moore taught at Miss Chapin’s School in New York, where she introduced italic handwriting in 1923. The success of this instruction led to an invitation from George Plimpton to study the books on handwriting in his collection, and to the 1926 publication by Ginn & Co. of a teacher’s manual and copybooks written by Moore. Interested in reviving the use of the broad-edged pen, Moore refers readers to early exemplars; her manual includes many illustrations drawn from books and manuscripts in the Plimpton collection. She inscribed this copy to him, and included a note thanking Plimpton for access to his books.

Gift of George Arthur Plimpton


Autograph letter, signed, to George A. Plimpton April 24, 1926

Plimpton Papers 1987 Gift


Rare Book & Manuscript Library / Butler Library, 6th Fl. East / 535 West 114th St. / New York, NY 10027 / (212) 854-5153 / rbml@libraries.cul.columia.edu