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Words by Michel Wlassikoff

La Fonderie typographique française

Born out of the merger of several independent foundries, the Fonderie published this type album amid global competition.
Born out of the merger of several independent foundries, the Fonderie published this type album amid global competition.
The Fonderie Typographique Française (FTF) was created in 1921 by the association of several independent foundries : the Turlot, Saling, Durey and Berthier, Renault and Marcou, Huart houses. This is the response to the increase in global competition from type foundries; At the same time, the Deberny and Peignot foundry resulted from the merger of the G. Peignot & Fils foundry and the Tuleu, Girard et Cie foundry, owner of the Deberny fund, in 1923.
It should be noted that the A. Turlot foundry had already purchased several companies in 1880, including the Derriey, Virey frères, Marcellin-Legrand, Dumeil and Colson. An important Spécimen Général was published by the Turlot foundry, Henri Chaix et cie, in 1914, comprising 454 pages, largely devoted to the Elzévirs. The Renault foundry, for its part, founded around 1850, absorbed the Marcou house before being integrated into the Fonderie Typographique Française.
It is difficult to know why the FTF published its first type album under the name: Album d'Alphabets pour la pratique du Croquis-Calque. Edité spécialement pour le Manuel français de Typographie moderne de F. Thibaudeau. Especially since the competing foundry, Deberny et Peignot, published an album of its types under exactly the same name, around the same period, i.e. at the end of the First world war. Although the two albums are not dated, we can estimate that they were published at the beginning of the activities of the two foundries, especially as the work of Thibaudeau which constitutes its head of work, the Manuel français de typographie moderne, dates from 1924.
The FTF album includes an important presentation of Cheltenham, a North American typeface, largely dedicated to titling, whose original design is due to Bertram Goodhue and Ingalls Kimball, in 1903, and all variations of which were designed by Morris Fuller Benton for the American Type Founders (ATF), until 1913.
Document: archives Signes

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