George W Jones

1860–1942

George W Jones, the ‘Master of Master Printers’ was born in Worcestershire and, as he was keen to point out, two another contributors to typography, William Caslon and John Baskerville, were also a Worcestershire men. Despite a rudimentary education he was an avid reader and his literacy secured him an apprenticeship with the important firm of Ebenezer Baylis, Worcester. But it was not until his move to the Leicestershire firm of Raithby Lawrence – the publisher and producer of The British Printer - that his career began to show signs of development. Jones produced the first edition of The British Printer and from 1891 he printed The Printing World. As a printer he was imbued with the spirit of innovation and was responsible for producing the first three-colour book in Britain in 1901. As a type designer Jones created Venezia for Stevens Shanks and Granjon, Estienne, Georgian and Baskerville for Linotype, and became printing advisor to Linotype in 1921 at the age of 61 years. Jones knew about type: how to use it, how to design it and how to print it. Some say he is the best all-round printer that Britain has ever produced, and his work stands as a monument to his life.