H. Berthold AG letterhead, 1961
This letter accompanied a specimen of Akzidenz-Grotesk, sent to a printing plant in Karlsruhe which, unlike the H. Berthold AG, is still in existence. It is interesting to see that the Stuttgart branch of the “type foundry and brass rule factory” used a blackletter for their identity. The letterhead was likely designed some years before 1961, see the updated board of directors in the footer. In the 1950s and 1960s, this genre communicated tradition rather than reaction or provocation, and could very well serve as the “public face” of a type foundry.
Trump-Deutsch (1936) was already 25 years old at this point. This Gotisch was Georg Trump’s only blackletter design, and his second realized typeface after City (1930). While these two early families were released with Berthold, all his subsequent work, from Schadow Antiqua (1938) to Mauritius (1968), was published by the C.E. Weber foundry. Georg Trump died on this day 30 years ago.
As Indra Kupferschmid puts it, Trump-Deutsch and Walbaum make for a “perfectly fitting and little surprising combination for something German. Not that this particular one was a classic combo, but a strict roman and a blackletter is not something rare, and these two typefaces from the Berthold catalog combine very well. They are a good representation for where classic German mass taste in type was before mid-century modernism and outside of vernacular lettering.”
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New discovery: The use of Trump-Deutsch (and Walbaum) for the letterhead of the H. Berthold AG foundry goes back all the way to the 1930s, and it wasn’t limited to the Stuttgart branch. Here’s an invoice from August 1937, by the head office in Berlin, for an order of 3.38 kg of Trump-Deutsch in 24pt.