Bert C. Chambers letters with Rudolph Ruzicka, 1931-1976 Rauner Manuscript MS-1363

Full Finding Aid


Bert C. Chambers letters with Rudolph Ruzicka

Call Number:

Rauner Manuscript MS-1363

Collection Dates:


Size of Collection:

.25 Linear Feet, 1 box


Bert Chambers (1894-1980). Graphic Designer. Letters from Rudolph Ruzicka about design work and personal life.

Access to Collection:


Use & Access

The materials represented in this guide may be accessed through the Rauner Special Collections Library at Dartmouth College. Rauner Library is located in Webster Hall. The materials must be used on-site and may not leave Rauner Library.

Rauner Special Collections Library is open to the public and in most cases no appointment is necessary. The exception is in the case of materials stored off site for which there may be a delay of up to 48 hours in retrieval. Please consult the Access to Collection statement below or contact Rauner Reference.

Conditions Governing Access


Conditions Governing Use

Copyright on this material has not been evaluated. You are free to use this material in any way that is permitted by copyright that applies to your use.

Introduction to the Collection

The Bert C. Chambers letters with Rudolph Ruzicka contain approximately 80 pieces of correspondence from the 1930’s to the 1970’s. The letters, all but two of which are to Chambers from Ruzicka, chronicle Ruzicka’s side of an increasingly intimate 40 year friendship between the two graphic designers and their families. Ruzicka discusses printing and design jobs of interest to both men as well as his summer vacations at Hartland, Greensboro, and Quechee, Vermont and his daughter’s, Tatiana and Veronica, lives and work. Also included are 10 prints by Ruzicka and a few letters from Tatiana Ruzicka to Chambers.


Barnette (Bert) Coe Chambers (1894-1980). Graphic Designer and printer.


Rudolph Ruzicka was born on June 29, 1883 in Bohemia. His family moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1894. At the age of 14, Ruzicka began an apprenticeship in wood-engraving with the Franklin Engraving Co. and attended evening classes at the Chicago Art Institute. He joined the staff of the American Bank Note Co. of New York City in 1903, and later the Calkins and Holden advertising agency. After leaving Calkins and Holden, Ruzicka began making prints and in 1912, he was one of the artists invited to exhibit in Paris. That same year, the first of his wood engravings appeared in the series of annual keepsakes for D.B. Updike's Merrymount Press in Boston. In 1940, he designed his first type face, called "Fairfield" which was released by the Mergenthaler Linotype Co. He followed that type face with two more "Fairfield Medium," and "Primer." During the 1950s and 60s, Ruzicka turned his attention to the design of medals, including the Emerson-Thoreau Medal for the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the John F. Kennedy Medal for the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the Dartmouth College Bicentennial Medal which was struck by the United States Mint in 1969. Ruzicka was also the author of "Thomas Bewick, Engraver" (1943) and "Studies in Type Design" (1968), as well as a member of the National Academy of Design, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Colonial Society of Massachusetts and an honorary member of the Society of Printers. He died in 1978, at the age of 95.

Related Materials

Rudolph Ruzicka papers MS-1078 ; Veronica Ruzicka papers MS-1125 ; Tatiana Ruzicka papers MS-1145

Box & Folder List

Box: 1,

Box Contents

  • Folder: 1, Ruzicka letters, 1930-1939
  • Folder: 2, Ruzicka letters, 1940-1949
  • Folder: 3, Ruzicka letters, 1950-1959
  • Folder: 4, Ruzicka letters, 1960-1969
  • Folder: 5, Ruzicka letters, 1970-1979
  • Folder: 6, Chambers' letter drafts, 1969
  • Folder: 7, Veronica Ruzicka letters, 1948-1954
  • Folder: 8, Fairfield type news clipping and Club of Odd Volumes meeting announcement, undated, 1953
  • Folder: 9, Ruzicka printing examples, undated

Finding Aids