Date of Award

12-2010

Degree Name

MA in History

Department

History

Advisor

Thomas Trice

Abstract

The Shakespeare Press Museum, a working letterpress museum at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, houses letterpress printing presses and equipment dating from the 1850s to the 1970s. Although the museum has been at Cal Poly since the 1960s, little work was completed on the historical context of the collections or to address the archival and educational frameworks of the museum’s collection. This thesis has three purposes: to place the museum’s collections in their nineteenth-century California historical context; to provide the first in-depth examination of the museum’s original founder, Charles “Shakespeare” Palmer; and to create an archival reference and program for the museum’s collections in their physical and digital form.

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