Small office supply, antique letterpress printing operation

Founded in 1927, the Grand River Press earned a living for three generations of the Seymour family and continues its quiet, small-town service today. As the owner since 1983 is in his 70s, it’s time to transition the turnkey operations over to someone new.

The building is a former Masonic lodge, with foundation walls so thick it’s listed as one of Trenton’s two nuclear bomb shelters, the four-story building is in good shape with approximately 3000 ft2 per level available and ~11’ tall ceilings. Regular maintenance has been done, such as roof repair and modern HVAC on the retail floor.

The retail floor has an appx 24’ x 38’ store that has served as Trenton’s primary office supply and copy center, and previously with gift cards, books, etc. It’s located on Main street, with as good a location as small-town downtowns get, and is the second tallest building in Trenton.

The large streetside staircase leads up to the second floor, formerly a Masonic meeting area and since 1983 has been used for inventory. It has linoleum-type flooring, men’s and women’s restrooms, two large rooms and what was a kitchen. There is a 1-2 person elevator that lifts from second up to third floors, but I’ve not operated it in twenty years.

Further up a normal-width staircase leads up to the third floor, which was a grand Masonic room for special occasions, with original theater-style carpeting, a restroom, kitchenette, and original art deco lighting. A small staircase leads further into the half-story projection room, elevator mechanics and roof access. All floors feature original pressed-tin ceiling panels and hardwood flooring that is 2-3” thick.

The retail-level also has the remains of the letterpress operations that at one time printed Trenton’s newspaper and subsequently produced flyers, stationary, and such with some limited jobs even today. It has an original Linotype type-setter machine, which was operating until my grandfather passed away in 2005. There are four letter press printing machines of various condition, ranging from small hand-fed (for napkins, etc) up to sheet-style (nearly large enough for newspapers but I’ve not seen larger than about 11x17 running). Other support equipment such as a paper cutter, folder, and dozens of racks of antique type fonts fill the appx 40’x30’ space. None of the equipment is of a guaranteed performance level, but the space is quite the museum and operations were maintained as best as possible while demand for local printing diminished.

Currently, it employs one full-time salary worker and my father who works about half-time, but I think one person could handle everything full time. He’s in great health and can help transition the business to the new owner, but has no interest in further employment himself. Their combined earnings would make this about a one to two-year payback of your investment, with nearly no overhead in subsequent years.

If looking for specific machines or printing equipment, feel free to contact.

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