Baxter, John (DNB00)

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BAXTER, JOHN (1781–1858), printer and publisher, was born at Rickhurst, Surrey, 20 Oct. 1781. Early in life he settled in Lewes as a bookseller and printer. He was the first printer to use the inking roller, which was made under his superintendence by a saddler at Lewes. Robert Harrild, who assisted him in his experiments, afterwards brought out a patent for the composition roller, and realised by it a handsome fortune. Among the earliest of Baxter's enterprises was the publication of a large quarto Bible, annotated by the Rev. John Styles, D.D., and illustrated with wood engravings. This work, known as Baxter's Bible, met with an immense sale, especially in America. His other publications include several important works on the topography of Sussex, and ‘The Library of Agricultural Knowledge,’ which had a very extensive circulation. Along with his youngest son, W. E. Baxter, he started the ‘Sussex Agricultural Express.’ He was an enthusiastic cricketer, and the joint, if not the sole, author of the book of rules for that sport, the first ever published, named ‘Lambert's Cricketer's Guide,’ after the celebrated professional of that name. He died 12 Nov. 1858. Baxter's second son, George Baxter, was the inventor of the process of printing in oil colours.

[Lower's Worthies of Sussex, 283–4.]

T. F. H.