|Librarian on a book at the Gutenburg Museum|
|The Gutenburg Bible -|
moveable type -
justified right margin
On June 24th - 1971 - Lulu and I got married. In 1973 - we built our Tamaqua chalet home. In 1975 - we bought a printing press and started The Tamaqua Paper. When our sons came along in 1977 - we sold the newspaper but both of us kept the education that owning a printing press and business provided.
In 1440 - in the city of Mainz - Johann Gutenburg invented the moveable type printing press. He probably affected the information industry more than anyone in the next 500 years.
Up until this time books were written by hand. They were very expensive. Only the rich owned books. A library made much more sense. The valuable books were attached to chains so that they would not be stolen.
Ironically - Lulu is over here to teach library science and attend library conferences. So we both really enjoyed our day exploring Gutenburg's hometown.
Mainz was established in 12 BC by the Romans. It is on the Rhine River one of the main traffic routes through Europe. Just up the river in Worms - just 80 years later - Martin Luther incubated the Protestant religion. Martin Luther translated the Greek Bible into German that was printed on Gutenburg's invention.
To keep this in perspective - Gutenburg's printing press came along in 1440 - a full 52 years before Columbus discovered America.
Mainz is only about 25 miles west of our home in Darmstadt. We drove the diesel there around noon. We walked to the Gutenburg Museum and had the place to ourselves before a big group of grayheads came in. Mainz is a very popular stop on the Rhine River cruise. Admission is only 3 euros. You get to see old printing presses and rare books.
Mainz has a beautiful downtown - with a 1000 year old cathedral. It was a Holy Roman Empire city - the church really kept a strong hold on things. So much money was spent on building massive churches as symbols of power - the money probably could have done a better job caring and feeding the locals. I could never understand how an all powerful God was always so broke - and needed money.
The Rhine River is a business engine in Germany. Much of their food and supplies travel by river boat.
We had an afternoon snack in downtown where they were preparing for a big street festival. By 5 PM - we were back home.
Note - this story is printed with a justified right margin.
|Gutenburg also bound the pages into books|