In celebration of the 175th anniversary of William Morris's birth, the Cleveland Public Library's Special Collections Department is featuring a display of his works.
William Morris was born in 1824, near London, England. He was a writer of poetry, fiction, and a translator of ancient and medieval texts. He was also an architect, artist, and a socialist reformer. Morris created designs for textiles, furniture, and wallpaper that helped to initiate the Arts and Crafts Movement in England. The Arts and Crafts Movement emphasized simplicity, good craftsmanship, and good design. The movement rejected the Victorian ideas of opulence and over embellishment. The importance of William Morris can be seen today in the lasting legacy of his designs and the enduring appeal of his work.
Morris also devoted much of his life to the develpoment of the Kelmscott Press, which he founded in 1890. Here, Morris desgined three typefaces: Golden, Chaucer, and Troy. The Kelmscott Press made an effort to recapture the basic values in printing craftsmanship and a return to the early techniques of bookmaking. Sixty-six volumes were printed at the Press, including the magnificient The Works of Geoffrey Chaucer, which showcases the art of the printed book. To view examples of Morris's works and other books that were printed by the Kelmscott Press, visit the Special Collections Department, on the 3rd floor of the Main Library Building.