Our New “Print”
An article in the June 28, 1917, issue of The Saratoga Sun proclaims:
“The accompanying illustration will serve to introduce to readers of The Sun, our new compositor, Miss Linotype, who arrived from New York on Saturday to accept a permanent position with this newspaper. In the classic language of the poet, ‘she’s a bird.’
“During its 25 years of existence, The Sun has furnished employment to many compositors, of all conditions, races and complexions but never has the office seen the equal of this individual, whose typesetting capacity is only limited to the amount of metal on hand. She will, if required, work 24 hours a day without a murmur of discontent and set almost as much type each hour as the ordinary hand compositor can in a day. It is entirely immaterial to her whether there are any stops for meals, sleep, Sundays or holidays. She does not smoke cigarettes, chew tobacco, nor ‘hit the booze,’ which is exceptional, as printers go, and is always on the job in readiness for more work – exceptional again. She has a mild, sweet disposition and is altogether a most congenial person to have about the office.
“She’s a good-looker, too, and a cordial invitation is extended to all our readers to visit The Sun office and see this wonderful machine in operation. The illustration gives but a faint idea of this wonderful piece of mechanism, which, instead of producing type in single characters, casts bars or slugs, from hot metal each complete in one piece and having on the upper edge the characters properly justified to print a line.
“Printing The Sun ‘The Linotype Way’ means a bigger, better and more newsy paper each week and assures our family of readers of our genuine appreciation of past support and our endeavor to meet future approval by publishing a newspaper that will give further and wider publicity to Saratoga and her prosperous people.
“The writer is convinced, after having visited almost every section of the state, that there are few towns in Wyoming that have as great and varied natural resources and advantages as has Saratoga and believes at the same time that there is no community in the great Northwest whose natural advantages have been so neglected and ignored as have those at our very door.
“Believing that a lack of publicity has contributed more than any other one factor to this condition, the management of The Sun has gone to an expense of several thousand dollars to modernize this plant and to place the paper in a position where it may more completely fulfill its mission in this community by giving greater publicity to the many resources and attractions of the Platte Valley, as well as to give better service to its readers and advertisers.
“The Linotype has become a positive necessity to any paper that claims to be at all modern and with the many other improvements made in this plant recently, places The Sun on a par with the many other up-to-date weekly papers of Wyoming.”
As a punk kid back in 1951, I learned to operate this marvelous typesetter. It sure beat hand setting type and revolutionized the printing industry. However, it was an evil machine and would squirt hot lead on your feet, grab your clothes, pinch your fingers, throw belts and parts at your head and sometimes even sling metal objects at your crotch.
Yet, back then, it did to newspapers what computers have done today.