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The Maryland Press, 1777-1790 by Joseph Towne Wheeler.
Volume 438, Page 1   View pdf image (33K)
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William Goddard, Printer in New London, Providence, New
York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, Founder of the

American Post Office

OF THE four leading printing establishments in Mary-
land during the Revolutionary period, the Green Press
at Annapolis, the Hayes Press at Baltimore, the Bartgis
Press at Frederick, and the Goddard Press at Balti-
more, the latter was by far the most important, judged
on the basis of quantity and quality of output, or by
the influence it exerted in the community in which it
was located. During the twenty years which elapsed between October
20, 1772, when William Goddard announced that he had "engaged a
suitable printing apparatus" and August 14, 1792, when he printed his
valedictory address to his fellow citizens, the Goddard Press increasingly
influenced every phase of community life. Those who shared in the labor
and profits of this press offer an unusual example of the high character and
talents of the successors of the Colonial printers. William and his sister,
Mary Katherine Goddard, occupy the foreground in any discussion of
Maryland literary culture, but the three partners who successively took
part in their varied activities in Baltimore, Eleazer Oswald, Edward
Langworthy and James Angell, deserve recognition for their important
literary and professional attainments.1

William Goddard was born at New London, Connecticut on Octo-
ber 20, 1740, the son of Giles Goddard and Sarah Updike. His father
held an important position in the community as a postmaster and physi-
cian. His mother came of that prominent Rhode Island family, from
which has descended Daniel Berkeley Updike, who in the last generation
has gained so great a degree of distinction among American printers,

1 The author acknowledges his great indebtedness to Dr. Lawrence C. Wroth's A. History of Printing in Colonial Mary-
land and to his subsequent articles on Colonial printing, particularly William Goddard and Some of his Friends in Rhode
Island Historical Society Collections, Vol. XVII (1924) No. 2, for material on the lives of the Maryland printers in the
eighteenth century. The present biography of William Goddard consists of a summary of Dr. Wroth's account of his career
together with some additional material found in manuscript letters and newspaper notices.


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The Maryland Press, 1777-1790 by Joseph Towne Wheeler.
Volume 438, Page 1   View pdf image (33K)
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