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The Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin - From Arion Press — Numbered edition in brown goatskin with a gilt stamp profile on the cover

Updated May 17: This has been sold.

A handsome volume from the Arion Press, published for the 300th anniversary of Franklin's birth.


With a full brown goatskin with gilt stamp profile on cover, gilt spine. No. 14 of 400 numbered copies from a total edition of 426.

See below for more on Arion, the Memoirs, and some of the many ways that this edition is extraordinary.

Shipping: $10.

About The Memoirs of Franklin

"Unpublished at the time of his death, Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography has since become the most widely read memoir of all time. This edition, published in celebration of the 300th anniversary of his birth, was letterpress printed from a digital typeface with historical relevance; named Aitken for Robert Aitken, the famous printer during the Revolution, and his daughter Jane Aitken, printer of the first American translation of the Bible (1808). Arion commissioned this proprietary face from type designer Linnea Lundquist especially for this project.

"Franklin’s Autobiography presents with vividness the key episodes in a young man’s rise, from poor apprentice to prominent citizen. Its unifying theme is the lessons in behavior and morality he learns along the way. It has been accurately described as a conduct book, but it is a greatly entertaining one. The Autobiography brings Franklin to life for the modern reader as a storyteller of genius who chooses just the right moment to laugh at himself."

More on Arion Press

From the beginning, Arion Press has been distinguished by its remarkable ability to transform beautifully written words – from ancient tomes to modern classics, from new material to forgotten texts – into compelling works of art that complement the author’s ‘voice’ and aesthetically capture the essence of the tale. Above all, Arion Press produces books intended to be read and enjoyed. The visual and tactile aspects merely augment, albeit brilliantly, the reader’s experience.

— Carol Grossman, Biblio

"The origins of Arion Press reach back to 1919, when the brothers Edwin and Robert Grabhorn came to San Francisco from Indianapolis. The brothers established the Grabhorn Press, which became one of the foremost fine printing establishments in the United States from the early 1920s to the mid-1960s. . . .

"When the Grabhorn Press closed in 1965, Robert Grabhorn partnered with Andrew Hoyem. Together, Grabhorn-Hoyem preserved and utilized the Grabhorn Press's vast and distinctive holdings of type and equipment. . . .

"In 1974, Arion Press was officially formed and launched a series of limited-edition books, printed by letterpress and bound by hand. Many of them were illustrated by prominent artists; some were accompanied by separate editions of original prints. To this day, the list of Arion publications is characterized by its diversity, with titles that range from ancient literature to modern classics. The Press has also developed new material for publication, and resurrected “lost” texts. . . .

"Arion editions are collected by individuals, museums and libraries, including the British Library, Stanford University, the New York Public Library, Duke University, the Getty Center, and the University of California."

Source: Arion Press


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