RIP Stephen O. Saxe

We are sad to report that Stephen O. Saxe, one of the APHA founders, longtime APHA newsletter editor, and printing historian, died April 27.

Steve was a frequent and knowledgable contributor to Briar press among other forums.

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This is sad news. Over the years he has answered many of my questions and posted photos of numerous pieces of equipment and articles. He will be missed.
Mike Day
Long Day Press

Steve will indeed be missed. A wealth of information and very much a gentleman.

John Henry

I will miss him.

A great shame - his flickr archive was invaluable to me at many times.

A dear Friend and rare Soul ascended, to be sorely missed and never to be replaced

Such a tremendous loss to the letterpress community. Steve was a good friend who shared my love of antique types. He shall be greatly missed.

Michael Vickey
Nickel Plate Press


Steve has helped me out a number of times over the years, and I have always respected his knowledge of and scholarly approach to printing history. But, even more, I respected his humility and humanity. He will be missed.

Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that. Steve was definitely one of the greats in letterpress and type history. My deepest condolences to those he has left behind.

This is very sad news. It will take some time for this to sink-in. I hope that further information, about any memorial service, is posted and I will try to attend. My condolences to his family.

Dave Greer

Any chance of a full resumee of his life?

Sad news indeed. We connected many times over our common love of the Golding brand and history. He was always willing to share his wealth of knowledge.

I’m very sorry to hear this. Steve has been a great friend and supporter to all of us. I will truly miss being able to pester him with obscure printing related questions which sent him digging in his incredible library.

Please post memorial info when you have it.

Daniel Gardiner Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY

A great guy with a wealth of printing knowledge who was always willing to share what he knew…..RIP, Steve.
Bill Allan/Sun Prairie, Wisconsin

An unusual depth of knowledge. RIP SOS

A little late to the conversation (had computer problems), but this is truly sad. Very hard for most people to even imagine the breadth and depth of typographic and letterpress knowledge that Steve had accumulated and graciously shared with the world for decades. An immense loss for all of us.

One little tidbit I will share is that I spent over three decades collecting various typecase handles and mounted individual samples for display in an empty case. I managed to fill three columns with eventually a few orphans on another plaque. Steve actually had at least THREE such full cases of unique handles displayed in his apartment!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! An AMAZING and humble man.

Probably enough Steve Saxe strories out there to fill a book.

Rick von Holdt
The Foolproof Press

Here is Steve’s obituary from the New York Times:
SAXE—Stephen O., 89, of White Plains, N.Y., died suddenly at his home on April 28. He was a graduate of Riverdale Country School, Harvard College, and Yale Drama School. He began his career in summer stock doing set design and then moved to television where he designed sets for soap operas. Subsequently he designed books for Harcourt Brace. Retiring at 55, Saxe then turned to a study of 19th century typography and printing. He was a founder of the American Printing History Association in 1974 and editor of its newsletter. He wrote numerous articles, and assembled a personal collection of vintage type foundry specimen books and metal type. Saxe also wrote or edited books including American Iron Hand Presses (1991), Nineteenth-Century American Designers & Engravers of Type (2009), and Travels with Pat (1994), a tribute to his late wife, Patricia Singleton Saxe. He was the son of Helen Fields Saxe and Leonard Spier Saxe and brother of the late Robert Leonard Saxe.
Published in The New York Times on Jun. 16, 2019.

Oh, no. Mr. Saxe was such a treasure. I’m so sorry to hear he is gone.