International Association of Printing House Craftsman IAPHC

My Dad passed away in December and he was always a printer, from the time served in The Air Force (Korean War) up until his passing at age 91. When growing up we had a printing press in our basement, and would go to yearly international conventions of the IAPHC. My Dad actually ran for, and was voted as the International President of Printing House Craftsman for a term. Just curious if anyone heard of, or is a member still?

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I was a member of the Hamilton, Ontario, Canada chapter of the IAPHC many years ago but have probably been out of it for at least 15 years, probably longer. Tried to look up IAPHC
on Google but couldn’t find anything current. Perhaps it has ceased operations.

(My family started in the printing business in 1868 and has been in it, in one form or another, since then). I am retired but one of my cousins is still active.

My understanding was that the Printing House Craftsmen were more in management and sales than on the shop floor. I think of Tommy Tommassini of the UC Press (and the original UN Charter) as a famous Craftsman, but also my old paper salesman Earl Gates of B,M & T, later Unisource.

I take it that you are referring to Blake, Moffitt & Towne, a great paper merchant that got bought out or merged into another company long ago. Their main competitor back in the 60s was Carpenter Paper Co. that became Carpenter-Offitt (sp), that was back in the days the company I worked for in San Francisco often bought a boxcar load of paper at a time from the Westvaco mill in West Virginia for our letterpress work. The letterpress coated sheet we bought was much lower in cost that the equal offset sheet . That was the main reason we could keep the Miehle flatbed presses working through the 60s. Our major monthly job was Safeway News, some 70,000 copies, that kept two presses going 2 shifts a day. It was mostly halftones, some text, heads either in Ludlow or ATF Brush, which the editor favored. The handset heads had millions of impressions, which is possible with proper make ready and impression. But I wander, those were great days.

I was president of the Redwood Empire Club IAPHC, in Sonoma County, California, 2003-4. We covered both shop and management issues. We had absolutely great tours and speakers, always informative. As far as I know, the club is now a Facebook group. There are no more local clubs. Maintaining membership was a problem. The international dwindled from 17000 or so to well below 1000. The Gallery of Superb Printing was a big deal and was the main fundraiser for the international. The IAPHC may still be active in Canada. I’m still proud of those awards that our company received.

My condolences on your Dads passing, and thanks for his service in the Air Force. What was his name?

Thank you all for your comments. I’ve been trying to find active chapters to no avail. It’s such a shame, because there were so many active members back in the 70’s and 80’s, and the conventions were awesome. Thank you Bppayne.. My Dad’s name was Carl Van Keuren.

Geoffrey, that is so cool that you were a member. From my understanding Canada may still have a few clubs, but can’t confirm that. I wish I could find kids (now old like me) that were in the club at the time. It would be so awesome to reminisce.