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Newspaper Printing Transcending Time
by: Jinky C. Mesias
Newspapers have been a remarkable part of human society way back some five centuries ago. Newspapers especially in Renaissance Europe are hand written and then privately circulated among merchants since the most common topics discussed are all about wars and then economic conditions that affect society. The first ever printed newspapers appeared in Germany in 1400 in the form of pamphlets or broadsides which are often times exaggerated in content. Its usual topic concerns Germanís atrocities like the famous folklore about Count Dracula.

The earliest predecessors of newspaper in the English-speaking world are called corantos which are small news pamphlets that contained noteworthy events. And the very first consecutively published newspaper was titled The Weekly Newes which was made available in the year 1622. Numerous newspapers of different titles also followed but they copied the format of The Weekly Newes.

The first ever published true newspaper in English was the London Gazette which was distributed in the year 1666. This newspaper was officially approved among the vast number of periodical titles and lasted for about a century.

The first newspaper printing press was used by Ben Franklin which was called the Ramage Press. This printing press was constructed entirely out of wood however there are also some parts that make use of iron. This printing press is now displayed at the National Museum in Washington. Another printing press was developed by Earl Stanhope but this time he created his printing press frame using entirely iron. For the power he combined toggle joint and lever.

The quest for perfecting the printing press technology has continued to great parts of the world until the year 1850 to 1860 which showed great advancements in the presses. It was during these years that fast printing was developed to answer the ever increasing demands for newspaper. But there are some problems with the created presses and it has something to do with the plates used for the presses. However, this problem was solved in the year 1861 by the application of a steam bed that is used to dry a novel style of paper mache mold. This novel style of paper mache mold is use to make a stereotype replica of the type pages which are in the form of plates which are fitted around the cylinders. The process usually takes an hour or so to come up with a single plate.

On the contrary the present day presses are capable of creating plates in minutes and has the ability to print on both sides of the paper while passing through the presses. The octuple machine is one of the most awaited printing press at present since it has the ability to fold and counts 96,000 complete 8-page paper per hour or 48,000 complete 16-page papers at sizes like that of the ordinary daily newspaper. Right now only one of this machine is placed in operation and can be seen in the printing room of the New York World.


About the author:
Jinky C. Mesias is a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major in Management. She is at present an Associate Manager of a Life Insurance Corporation and do freelance writing in her spare time.

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