1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Caslon
CASLON, the name of a famous family of English typefounders. William Caslon (1692–1766), the first of the name, was born at Cradley, Worcestershire, and in 1716 started business in London as an engraver of gun locks and barrels, and as a bookbinder’s tool-cutter. Being thus brought into contact with printers, he was induced to fit up a type foundry, largely through the encouragement of William Bowyer. The distinction and legibility of his type secured him the patronage of the leading printers of the day in England and on the continent. The use of Caslon types, discontinued about the beginning of the 19th century, was revived about 1845 at the suggestion of Sir Henry Cole, and used for printing the Diary of Lady Willoughby (a pseudo-17th-century story) by the Chiswick Press. The headline on this page is “Caslon Old Face.” He died on the 23rd of January 1766. His son, William Caslon (1720–1778), who had been partner with his father for some years, continued the business.