Curtis & Mitchell Columbian No. 1

We recently came across a Curtis & Mitchell Columbian No. 1 table-top press. We’re missing rollers…but otherwise it’s in pretty good condition.

We don’t know much about the press… and Google isn’t helping very much. We could be missing more parts…we just don’t know.

If anyone has any info about these presses (how to find parts, what it could be worth, how to clean it – its pretty dusty), please get back to us!


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Here are some photos. I think it’s pretty good for being a century old.

(i was having trouble with the attachment uploader…so you get a link instead)

The first thing you need to do is look around for the chase if you haven’t already found it. A replacement chase for such a rare press will be hard to supply. You should also see if the roller cores and trucks can be found, though they can be replaced pretty easily. Look around on Briar Press for advice on how to clean the rust off and get it ready to use. Or wipe it down, clean off the ink disc, lock up some type, ink up a hand brayer, and do some printing! The press looks complete and in good condition except for the rust and missing chase and rollers. Good luck!


Thanks Bob! Great idea about the hand brayer. Totally didn’t cross my mind.

Is there a site with some info about Curtis & Mitchell? I’ll done some searching too and have not come up with much. We have a Colombian No 1 and it would be cool to know more about its age or the company that created it.

The book “Personal Impressions” by Elizabeth Harris has a couple of pages (pages 88, 89, 90) about C&M.
Hope this helps. I own about 8 presses made by Curtis & Mitchell.


The fourth picture has a chase in the background.

curious how the progress is coming with the Colombian - i just picked up the No. 1 the other day at a book shop, and its missing the chase and the lever. The lever i think i can manufacture myself pretty easily - but im curious about the dimensions of the chase as well as what kind of rollers you’re using?