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Archival description
Simon Fraser University Special Collections and Rare Books Rimmer, Jim English
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Rimmer November 2006

File consists of notes and correspondence related to Bringhurst's participation in Rimmerfest, an event celebrating the life of Jim Rimmer, hosted by Simon Fraser University Library's Special Collections on November 25, 2006. Bringhurst's talk was entitled "Jim Rimmer in context."

Jim Rimmer collection

  • MsC 41
  • Fonds
  • 1930-2012, predominant 1960-2010

The collection reflects Rimmer’s career as a designer, illustrator, printer, and publisher, and his involvement with members of the printing community and various associations. Records document Rimmer’s graphic design, typeface design and printing processes and accomplishments, and the publication activities of Pie Tree Press. The extensive graphic material within the collection includes sketches, drawings and prints. Also included are Rimmer’s linocut and woodcut blocks, as well as master patterns, specimen castings, matrices, lead working patterns, and cast metal sorts for many of his metal typefaces. The collection is arranged into nine series: Correspondence (1930-2010, predominant 1978-2010); Subject files (1938, 1956-[2009?]); Pie Tree Press publications and related material ([ca. 1978-2009]); Typeface design ([1971-2010]); Commercial work (1960-2009); Art prints and illustrations ([1970-2010]); Promotional and advertisement material ([197-?]-2008); Works by others regarding Jim Rimmer (1982-2012); and General photographs (1961-2002).

Rimmer, Jim

Miscellaneous prints, small

File consists of four miscellaneous broadsides. Records include a keepsake printed for the first Vancouver Antique Book Fair by Barbarian Press; a Duthie Books book mark, “Goudy Initials” created by the Lanston Type Company; a print of Tom Sawyer and a bird; and a print of an unFile titled poem and accompanying illustration.

Rimmer, Jim

Zigarre, Poster Paint, Lancelot, R. Foster’s (Pericles) Cadmus (digital)

File consists of records related to the design of the Zigarre, Poster Paint, Lancelot Titling and Cadmus typefaces. Records include sketches on transparency paper of Zigarre, letter cut-outs and printed samples of Duensing Titling, ink sketches and first and second drawings of Lancelot as well as digital samples, drawings used for digitization, sketches of Cadmus and digital printed samples, large colour sketches of Poster Paint, as well as digitally printed sketches/samples.

Rimmer, Jim

General photographs

Series consists of slides and prints featuring images of Jim Rimmer, as well as various aspects and stages of the printing process and the design and cutting of metal typefaces in his studio. Also included is an image of Gerald Giampa.

Miscellaneous correspondence #2

File consists of miscellaneous incoming correspondence, including invoices, comments concerning Rimmer’s work, photocopied articles, letters of thanks, postcards, and information regarding the Alcuin Society’s Wayzgoose.

Rimmer, Jim

Miscellaneous photographs

File consists of various photographs documenting Rimmer’s life and work. Photographs show images of Rimmer’s band, the Apex Jazz Band, a Thompson Caster, and various images of the process of type cutting. Also included are photocopied photographs of Giampa visiting Rimmer’s foundry. Members identified in the Apex Jazz Band photograph are: Chris Thornly, Alex Key, Barb Humphries, Mike Lord on the trombone and Jeff Leader on the drum.

Rimmer, Jim

Works by others regarding Jim Rimmer

Series consists of works created by others relating to Jim Rimmer. Included are articles pertaining to Rimmer; journals, broadsides and pamphlets set in Rimmer typefaces; and memorial books. Series also includes records relating to the staging of ‘Rimmerfest’ at the SFU Vancouver campus in the fall of 2006. These records include electronic copies and colour printouts of photographs taken at ‘Rimmerfest’ and for a video presentation at the event; writings about Jim; a guestbook; and nineteen broadsides produced by friends and colleagues for the event.

Rimmer, Jim

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

File consists of a copy of “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus”, a Christmas keepsake printed by Rimmer. Text is based on a letter to the New York Sun in 1897 from 8 year old Virginia O’Hanlon, and the response by editor Francis Church. The file also contains three other printed keepsakes of this text.

Rimmer, Jim

Rimmer Type Foundry

File consists of printouts of pages from the web site, of biographical material and a catalogue of available digital typefaces designed by Jim Rimmer.

Rimmer, Jim

Promotional and advertisement material

Series consists of material related to the promotion and advertisement of Rimmer’s typographic and graphic design work. Records include sample linocut prints, typeface samples, illustration proof-sheets, portfolios, and commercial advertisements.

Rimmer, Jim

Miscellaneous correspondence #1

File consists of miscellaneous incoming correspondence, including comments from admirers of Rimmer’s work, letters of thanks for tours and talks, information about printing equipment and material, and comments on articles written by Rimmer.

Rimmer, Jim

Notes on type cutting

File consists of a single notebook containing text and accompanying sketches explaining the process of type cutting. Records also include sample prints and a metal letter punch.

Rimmer, Jim

Early Printers in the City of Venice

File contains five broadsides of “Early Printers in the City of Venice”, which Rimmer reset from an original text page by Bruce Rogers. The piece showcases Goudy’s Italian Oldstyle in two font sizes. The broadsides were printed by Rimmer for members of Graphic Designers of Canada, and each copy is initialed by Rimmer.

Rimmer, Jim

Art prints and illustrations

Series consists of numerous prints and illustrations created by Rimmer as art pieces, as well as linocut blocks, woodcut blocks and stencils created by Rimmer to produce prints. Includes images of animals, people, still life, Frederic W. Goudy and keepsakes created for the American Typecasting Fellowship, (A.T.F.) and other associations.

Rimmer, Jim

Rimmer – Newsletters, announcements, etc.

File consists of various items, including American Typecasting Fellowship, (A.T.F.) reports and membership lists, copies of “The Printer”, sketches, photocopied articles, Alcuin Society correspondence, type specimens and newsletters of the Typochondriacs and the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild, (CBBAG).

Rimmer, Jim

Alcuin Press material

File consists of excerpts of “Ten Canadian Private Presses,” published by the Alcuin Press in 2002. The excerpts include an article discussing Rimmer’s work and several samples of his type and illustrative work.

Rimmer, Jim

Masquerading North

File contains two broadsides of “Masquerading North”, a poem by Robert Kroetsch, illustrated and printed by Rimmer on handmade paper by Brian Queen. The print was made for Cameron Treleaven of Aquila Books, Calgary. The copies are initialed by Rimmer, Queen, and Kroetsch. Note attached to verso explains the making of the paper, including the location where the material was collected.

Rimmer, Jim

Nephi Med[iaeval]

File consists of mounted ink drawings of Rimmer’s Nephi Mediaeval typeface, named after his father, in small caps. Records also include a printing of the first trial cast, dated from May 1981.

Rimmer, Jim

Rimmer – Envelopes & business cards

File consists of incoming correspondence, envelopes and business cards retained for their contact information. File also includes a slide photograph of a casting machine.

Rimmer, Jim

Christmas keepsake books

File consists of six Christmas keepsake books, including two keepsakes printed by Pie Tree Press: “Sounds of Singing” (three copies) and “The Legend of the Christmas Tree”.

Rimmer, Jim

Commercial work

Series consists of sample, draft and completed commercial work produced by Rimmer as a free-lance designer employed by various companies, organizations and individuals. Records include items completed by Rimmer for Colophon Books, including Alison’s Fishing Birds and preliminary work on Allen Ginsberg’s Meditations at Lake Louise; editorial cartoons created by Rimmer for the Williams Lake Tribune from 1960 to 1961; and numerous prints, paintings, and logos created for commercial purposes. Companies, organizations and individuals represented include Murchie’s Tea and Coffee Ltd., Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, Air Canada, Vancouver Public Library, Hot Jazz Club, the band Heart, Whistler village, Shrine Circus, and Douglas & McIntyre Publishers.

Rimmer, Jim

Photos taken by J.R. at Ho Sun Hing Printshop

File consists of photographs taken by Rimmer for inclusion in an article written for the American Typecasting Fellowship Newsletter about printing in Vancouver’s Chinatown. Photographs are accompanied with a brief text explaining their content.

Rimmer, Jim


File consists of records documenting Rimmer’s design of the Cree Syllabic typeface, a revival of the typeface devised and cut by Reverend James Evans in the early 19th century. Records include the first proof of the type and sketches in ink and pencil, as well as information concerning Rev. Evans, a syllabic chart, copies of the syllables to be cut, and correspondence from Robert Bringhurst. File also contains an explanatory note added by Rimmer to explain his motivation and design process.

Rimmer, Jim

Times Burgess originated by Jim Rimmer

File consists of records related to Rimmer’s design of an italic typeface to accompany Time 54. Records include pencil sketches, original key letters from a trial design, a series of second attempts, photocopies images of the letters, and the first sketch of the large caps.

Rimmer, Jim

Typeface design

Series consists of material related to Rimmer’s design and production of typefaces for both the Rimmer Type Foundry and the Lanston Type Company. Records include preliminary sketches, drawings in ink and pencil, transparencies, samples, digital print-outs, electronic files, master patterns, specimen castings, matrices, lead working patterns, and cast metal sorts. Some files contain notes and instructions for modification, and some include explanatory comments written by Rimmer. Electronic files were created by Rimmer on a Macintosh computer using the typeface design software IKARUS and saved to 3.5" floppy disks and compact discs.

Rimmer, Jim

Press sheets of “Fred Goudy, Type Designer”

File consists of numerous folded press sheets created in 1979 for “Fred Goudy, Type Designer”, as well as prints and mockup notes. File also contains a letter written by Rimmer explaining the process of this project and the reason for the project’s abandonment.

Rimmer, Jim

Cartier lowercase

File consists of records documenting Rimmer’s design of the Cartier lowercase typeface, inspired by Carl Dair’s Cartier typeface designed for Canada’s centennial in 1967. Records include prints and proofs of the design at various stages of development. Records also include a pamphlet providing information on Dair’s design process, a master pattern card of the letter ‘b’, and a sample print to be used for wrapping the font.

Rimmer, Jim

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