Archive of the Keepsake Press

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

This is a comprehensive collection of the Press's records 1957-1989. Boxes are labelled as follows:

  • ACCOUNTS
  • CORRESPONDENCE 1960s
  • CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, INVOICES 1964-1973
  • ORDERS, INVOICES. 1968-1974
  • CORRESPONDENCE 1970s
  • CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, INVOICES 1971-1972; 1978
  • CORRESPONDENCE -1973-
  • CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, INVOICES 1979-1980
  • ORDERS, INVOICES. 1980-81; 1982-85
  • 'Paid Keepsake accounts' 1978-1981;
  • CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, INVOICES 1982-1985
  • BLOCKS Linos, zincos, wood-engravings
  • BLOCKS Zincos, &c.
  • BLOCKS
  • BLOCKS
  • 'File copies of pamphlets & misc. items'. Proofs, trials ephemera
  • 'Keepsake Poems'. 'Sheets sans covers; covers sans sheets'
  • 'Keepsake Press file copies'
  • CATALOGUES. 'Printing catalogues & specimens of foundries'; machinery, specimen newspapers
  • CATALOGUES. Suppliers' catalogues, &c.
  • 'Keepsake Press file copies'. Covers and sheets
  • 'Keepsake Poems file series complete'. And some overs.
  • Keepsake Poems to 1977. Original art work; Printed large sheets; Display for exhibition
  • FILE COPIES
  • FILE COPIES
  • 'Roughs, fliers, loose sheets, covers'. And rejects.
  • Offset printing & experiments; Stanley Cook, &c. Spare & unprinted sheets
  • SEPTRE PRESS POEMS
  • Large format books. Proofs of ornaments; proofs type, &c.
  • MISCELLANEOUS. Personal; booksellers' catalogues

Administrative / Biographical History

The Keepsake Press was the creation of Roy Lewis (1913-1996) and grew out of his lifelong fascination with printing design and illustration. He set up his business in Richmond, Surrey, with the assistance of his daughters, as a way to help various poets among his friends and acquaintances to reach their public. Their choice had previously been between amateurish and off-putting duplication, and expensive self-financed publication. The Keepsake Press was able to produce presentable limited editions, composed by hand and printed letterpress. It also did all the associated work of advertising and negotiating with bookshops. Among the authors published by Keepsake were Edward Lowbury, Gavin Ewart, Mervyn Peake, Peter Porter, and Roy Fuller. The Press's bibliography lists eighty-one items, one of which is the Press's well-known series of Keepsake poems. Thirty-nine single poems with an illustration were published between 1972 and 1979, adding Vernon Scannell, Kevin Crossley-Holland, Charles Causley, and many others to the Press's list of authors.

Conditions Governing Access

Open to all researchers. No reader's ticket is required but an appointment is necessary. Check www.reading.ac.uk/special-collections/using/sc-using.asp for contact details and opening hours.

Acquisition Information

Presented to the Library by Roy Lewis in 1995.

Note

Description prepared by Bridget Andrews from an original by David Knott.

Other Finding Aids

Contents of each box listed as above.

Personal Names

Corporate Names