Raymond J. Prince Graphic Arts Collection

In Memory of Raymond J. Prince

Raymond J. Prince

Industry veteran and Cal Poly Graphic Communication supporter Ray Prince passed away May 1,2020.

Always a friend and supporter of education, Ray helped develop the resources and funded what is now called the Raymond J. Prince Graphic Arts Center (RJPGAC) at Cal Poly. He arranged many donations of publications, raised substantial money, and was responsible for the donation of the entire Printing Industries of America Wadewitz Library to Cal Poly; now the largest graphic communication library in the world. The collection includes rare books, some dating back hundreds of years. These books are protected in the university’s Rare Book Collection, but accessible by students, faculty, and members of the industry for research. Hence, the students at Cal Poly are surrounded by knowledge at their fingertips as a result of Ray Prince.

We are eternally grateful for his support to our faculty, facilities, and students.

(Incorporating the PIA/GATF Wadewitz Library)

We are excited about the Raymond J. Prince Graphic Arts Collection and are always striving to improve and expand it for the benefit of the industry, the Graphic Communication Department here at Cal Poly and for the student constituency that will have access for many years into the future.

Our goals are to continue to sort and shelve as much of the materials that we can to make accessible to the public, students, and scholars alike.

Most of this collection was originally known as the Wadewitz Library which was initially housed at the PIA/GATF offices located in Sewickley, Pennsylvania. Through the vision and passion of Raymond J. Prince, Dr. Harvey Levenson, and a dedicated network of friends and donors associated with the collection, it was transported and received at its new home in the Graphic Communication Department of the California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California.

To date, we have received over 480 boxes of materials from the PIA/GATF Wadewitz Library, and an additional 100 boxes of materials from various other interested donors, which have been sorted, categorized, and shelved in strategic areas of the Graphic Communication Department. The collection is open to any and all who are interested in perusing the endless shelves stacked throughout the department. As we continue to work on the development of a catalog, below is a quick snapshot as to how the collection is contained, sorted, and distributed:

Graphic Communication Department Conference Room and Office Area (26-201)

  • Historical Inland Printer, American Printer, and Graphic Arts Monthly Bound Volumes
  • Photo-engraver's Bulletin

The RJPGAC Resource Room (26-212B)

  • Graphic Arts Research Institutes (GARI Office)
    • Contains an extensive collection of research papers and related materials from a worldwide variety of graphic arts research institutes and associations
  • Books focused primarily upon student course work and instructional needs. Specifically: design, digital imaging, and printing technology, and administration and management
  • The Castle Press resource library related to sales and marketing management
  • Extensive collections of materials devoted to environmental science and historical journals on offset lithography

The Frank Preucil Research Room (26-212C)

  • Color and color reproduction books, journals and related materials drawn primarily from the collections of Frank Preucil and Fred Billmeyer. The research focus of this room is further emphasized by an extensive collection of abstract bulletins, design annuals, conference proceedings, Seybold reports, and Mr. Preucil's personal papers.

GrC Primary Lecture Room (26-204)

  • Bound printing and packing industry periodicals, mostly from the PIA/GATF Wadewitz library collection

Inks, Substrates, and Toners Lab (26-209B)

  • Bound periodicals associated with inks, toners, substrates, and chemistry, mostly from the PIA/GATF Wadewitz Library collection

Electronic Publishing Lab (26-213)

  • Unbound miscellaneous industry periodicals, many dealing with practical aspects of electronic imaging, mostly from the PIA/GATF Wadewitz Library collection

The RRDonnelley Lecture Room (26-221)

  • The Richard S. Fisch Imaging Science and Technology Collection. This subset of the RJPGAC consists primarily of the Richard Fisch collection. These materials are augmented by journals and books from the Wadewitz library and journals and conference proceedings from the collection of Arthur Diamond. Some specific highlights include a complete set of Recharger magazine, important years of bound optical society journals, a vast variety of photographic and imaging science abstracts and journals, and a concise collection of materials about the practice of photography itself.

The Shakespeare Press Museum Resource Room (26-116)

  • Books and journals pertaining to letterpress printing and typesetting 1850-1950
  • Historical printing industry business practices and procedures

Archival Room (26-116M)

  • Boxed books and journals in the basement area.
  • Items considered to be in very low demand for historical interest, instructional, or research purposes are stored here.

The Robert. E Kennedy Library, Special Collections Department

  • The RJPGAC's historic and rare books are housed here, including the Lee Augustine collection and selections from the Frank Preucil and Fred Billmeyer collections, all of which were part of the PIA/GATF Wadewitz Library. Access to these materials is restricted and is only possible by making prior arrangements with library staff.

The Graphic Communication Department, which houses most of the collection, is located in the Graphic Arts Building on the campus of the California Polytechnic State University. Visit this page to learn how to find us on campus:http://grc.calpoly.edu/contact

The collection is open and free to the public. Students, faculty, staff, scholars, legal consultants, historians, engineers, managers, and friends of the graphic communication industry.

Should you wish to visit, the collection is open 8:00am-5:00pm Monday through Friday throughout the year (it is often closed during university holidays and academic breaks, so it would be best to call should you wish to visit during these times).

You can call the Graphic Communication Office at (805) 756-1108 to inquire about open hours to reserve a special visit.

We are proud to house the former Wadewitz Library and even more delighted to now showcase the Raymond J. Prince Graphic Arts Collection. The collection was renamed the Raymond J. Prince Graphic Arts Collections to honor Mr. Prince for his passion and dedication to this vast and incredible industry. Mr. Prince, a printing industry leader, a technical expert, and generous benefactor, is now the face of the collection and will remain the honored namesake for generations to come.

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