ID ATF 6pt Copperplate Gothic 1-4

I have a couple galleys of pied Copperplate. Do the NUMBER of nicks tell you which 6pt size? Eg does No. 3 have 3 nicks, and #4 has four nicks? Is this to simple and logical, or is there another way to tell which # of CPG I have?

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You posed an interesting question that made me run downstairs into the print shop and look at my Copperplate Gothic series. Your theory does not hold up, however. The number of nicks does not correspond to the number given to identify the size of the type.

In checking the 1906, 1912, and 1923 and later ATF specimen books, the numbers 1 through 90 are used to identify every size of Copperplate Gothic, whether it’s one of the five sizes of six-point, four sizes of 12-point, or two sizes of 18 and 24 point. (Actually, the 18 and 24 point sizes used the same numbers.)

Maybe, one day long ago, some printer identified your type as 12-1, 12-2, 12-3, or 12-4 Copperplate Gothic (whether Light, Heavy, Italic, Expanded, Condensed, or Shaded). Such a system was used by ATF for another typeface that I have that was offered in numerous sizes on one size body, Engravers Bold. My fonts of 6, 12, 18, and 24 point Engravers Bold are listed in the catalog as 6-point No.1, 6-point No.2, 6 No.3, 6 No.4, 12 No1, 12 No.2, 12 No. 3, 18 No. 1, 18 No. 2, 24 No. 1, 24 No.2, with the higher number being the largest height on the body and the 1 being the smallest height. However, Copperplate Gothic was not identified that way.

If you have access to any ATF specimen book between 1906 and the 1960s, you can compare your type visually with the specimens shown to find the correct ID number (1-90) for the type.

I hope this is clear. Good luck.