Hisotrical Question about galleys

I work at a middle sized magazine that has been around so long, and under the same founding editor for so long, that there are vestiges here of another era of print publication. For example, we have a staff of two part time and two full time typesetters (of which I am one). Just typesetters. It’s all digital of course, but I got the job here because of my training as a mechanical typesetter, and because I admitted that I didn’t want to do anything but set type. I don’t care for (or am not good at design work, I’m not a manager, I’m not a writer). This structure, as far as I can tell is unique among magazines of our shape and size. Usually typesetting is something that’s been taken over by people that do multiple things.

Anyway, one of the vestiges has sort of baffled me, and no one here seems to know anything about it. Our founding senior editor refers to one of our galley templates as a “real galley” and to the other template as a “galley.” I have not had occasion to ask him what this means yet (he’s not exactly approachable).

I have a guess, but I don’t know the history of print publication in the US very well, so I’m hoping someone can clear this up or point me to a place that can.

Officially our two galley types are called “A” and “B.” The only difference is that an “A” has two columns and a “B” has one. Font, leading, page dimensions, column width and depth, paragraph styles…all identical. My theory is that a galley is “real” because nothing has been changed about it to make it look anything at all like the final laid out pages?

Thoughts? Help! Weigh in!

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J.D.Sir, few ramblings from a long time ago from U.K. (August 1954)
In. even small production houses, but more so in Firms that had Monotype or Linotype the larger number of Galleys were varying sizes/widths from 4/5” up to 9” usually with Zinc base,s and One end Two sides. Hardwood encased in brass, screwed from underneath, (Countersunk Brass screws)
Generally slightly thicker base material than Later day Galleys? but still usable on Galley Proof press.s.
With the advent of more firms acquiring Monotype and Linotype greater Galley and Galley rack capacity was needed, consequently One Piece pressed steel became the Norm, but was only an interim step, because, the Monotype ideally required Galleys with with sprung loaded transferable ends, i.e. On the Caster with the open end to receive the product from the machine, up to 22” depth of type (approx), slid down until the transferable end could be clipped back in to receive the FIRST line of text,(sidestick and quoined up,) for proofing and then into galley rack of appropriate size, pending returned proof(s) etc.
Generally the Monotype could accomodate and required Galleys (with sprung loaded transferable ends) up to 9”+.!
Linotype, generally, only needed Galley,s that could accomodate around 36 ems length of line(s).
In Newspaper houses, (running Linotypes) the majority of typeset material was 13 ems=news column width.

Pressed steel galley,s inc. transferable end variety, had/have the added advantage of being able to utilize powerful Magnetic Quoin,s.? Stop end for proofing.!

Still favoured by new wave Hobby Printers etc 10” x 8” or Quarto based Galleys and appropriate racks, i.e. duplex racks housed under Smaller *Stones*!!!

Plus still around, in limited use Pre Make ready Galley,s? very useful for Novices/Learners because in locked down form can be used directly on to conventional proof press,s.

Best shot for starters, Good Luck.

I don’t think John is looking for an explanation of what a letterpress/type galley is but a galley in the sense of a “galley proof.” Referred to as galleys, these are proofs or a print out of the raw typesetting before it is made up into pages, typically for proof reading, editorial review, etc. In John’s case, the fellow he is working for doesn’t have a clue what the term really means historically but uses it in a current context of digital work and not in hot metal/letterpress usage. The B galley is likely the straight output from the typesetting effort, the A has been formatted to their particular requirements. The same fellow probably has no physical concept of leading, point size of type (which he calls fonts), line length in picas, etc. It’s a relatively new world of garbage talk suited to the newer methods, and I’ll catch hell for that from anyone under age 50 to 55.

At least next week I’ll be with a bunch of people in Iowa who are into letterpress, and we may have to help the ladies out in their vocabulary usage in regards to type and letterpress.

Years ago my family printing firm, William Haedrich & Sons in Brooklyn NY, printed books and magazines as well as general commercial work. From that experience, I think that a galley proof was a proof made from one column of slugs directly off the linotype. The metal slugs which made up the column were of course on a galley.

When we made up a page from hand (set) type and the aforementioned columns of linotype slugs, we would put each of those pages on a galley and also proof them. After proofing, we would put the page galleys in a big galley cabinet (of which we had many which were 5 to 6 feet high), ready to be laid out later for the press.

So, those could be interpreted as two types of galley proofs.

I think this is the same thing Fritz is talking about above.

Fritz, you have to move that age up to 60 to 65.

There is a whole vocabulary devoted to proofing, and O.F. Duensing wrote an article about that in the Ninth Annual Production Yearbook (‘49 or so); I thought it was on the Vandercook info site, don’t see it now.
Galley proofs are the first generation of raw proofs of type composition, whether off the machine or out of the stick, because they are proofed on the galley on a galley press; typically from the long 23” galleys. They go to the proofreader for correction, may go through more passes before being made up and seen as page proofs. The only place I’ve heard where the term galley is used in modern publishing would be where books of the earliest passes of typesetting are sent out as “bound galleys” to readers in the industry.
I don’t see any historical validity in referring to a digital template as a galley.

Age wise, I was thinking about when teenagers first started being interested in computers, through the early games like Pong and Pacman, and that lead them into the bottomless pit of electronic technology. Someone 55 now and younger would likely never have been exposed to most older technology as every day events—letterpress, steam engines, street cars, and the like. It is ironic that a professed Luddite like myself grew up in Silicon Valley and actually had David Packard hand me my 9th grade graduation diploma in Palo Alto all those years ago. He and Hewlett started off in a garage in Palo Alto, and I started my letterpress business in my parent’s garage in the same town and look where it got me. But I do know both sides of a galley.