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Heidelberg KSD - from the Howard Iron Works Collection

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C. Potter Jr. & Co. Country Newspaper Press - Circa 1865

Charles Potter Jr. was born in Madison County, NY, in 1824, and at the age of 22, moved to Rhode Island to take a teaching job. In 1848, he joined a local firm as a manager of their new foundry. The foundry flourished under his management, and Potter saw an opportunity to start his own business.

Between the 1850s to early 1860s, Potter was engaged in various business ventures –some were successful, others had failed. The Civil War dealt him the most severe financial blow. But, nothing could keep Charles Potter Jr. down for too long - not a dire financial situation nor personal misfortune. During this dark time, Potter got busy designing and perfecting his country newspaper press. There were many competitors during this period, but Potter was successful in designing and building an affordable, superior press in the technical sense, and possibly also the most beautiful of its kind, as reported in the September 3, 1864 issue of Scientific American Journal. One of those presses was the Potter that is now in our Collection.

With his strong conviction and perseverance, Charles Potter Jr. grew his business into one of the leading press manufacturers of the day, rivaling the likes of Goss, R. Hoe, and Scott. In 1899, at the age of 75, Potter died - survived by his wife and three of four of their daughters. We compiled a brief history of Charles Potter Jr. – click HERE.

Our C. Potter Jr. Country Newspaper Press was built at Potter’s Hope Valley factory in Rhode Island, circa 1865 (or prior). It handles 30” x 46” sheet size, with a fly-style delivery, and a unique “mangle rack” system which cleverly coordinates the movements of the bed and cylinder.

We acquired the Potter in 2014 and set out to begin the restoration almost immediately. But, after a careful evaluation of the amount of work involved and the long road ahead of us, we decided to put the project temporarily on hold. In Fall 2017, we picked up where we left off.

We’re proud to have been successful in completing this very challenging restoration work on this special press, and happy to report that this 153-year old beauty still prints. Another important piece of history preserved for our next generations.

Our Potter press is very rare – in fact, our extensive research has indicated that our press could be the only C. Potter Jr. Country Newspaper press of this model and vintage in existence in the world today.

We chronicled the restoration work in this slide presentation – click HERE

C. Potter Jr. & Co. Country Newspaper Press - Circa 1865


Serial No.:



Circa 1865

30" x 46"



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