Altemus, Joseph (Philadelphia, PA)
(1790) "The house of Henry Altemus is of long standing. It was established
in 1790 by Schadrack Taylor who was succeeded in the business by his
apprentice and nephew, Joseph T. Altemus.the father of the present
proprietor." (Henry Altemus) Joseph T. Altemus won a widespread reputation
for the quality of his bindings and was specially noted for fine finishing and
tooling. Many of the labor-saving devices now employed were introduced by him.
He imported from England a coggle press, which he arranged so as to do certain
classes of finishing on the sides of books that had been done previously by
hand. This was practically the first introduction in the country of stamping
on the sides of books. Afterward, under his personal supervision, he had made
a large embossing press for heavy relief work, This effected a great
revolution in bookbinding. Besides improvements made by him in many of the
processes of bookbinding he originated many styles of binding, a number of
which have since become standare, Among these are: Heavy panelled and bevelled
boards, inlaid sides, embossed leather backs and cloth sides of school-books
in place of the old style full-skiver binding." He would be succeeded by his
son Henry. Publishers' Weekly no. 752. June 26, 1886 pg. 804.
(1825) 24 Cherry. Philadelphia Directory and Strangers Guide.