Thursday, April 12, 2012

John Buckner's Printing Press

Virginians were industrious and ambitious.  They built plantations, communities, parish houses, and generally gave of their substance to improve the welfare of the colony. One such person was John Buckner, a merchant who resided in Gloucester County.  He imported a printing press and employed a trained printer, William Nuthead, to manipulate it. In 1680, the General Assembly ordered him to print the Acts passed in the course of that year. However, later on he was accused of working without a license and was summoned before the Governor and Council to answer the charge at which time he was required to make bond to refrain from using the press until the royal pleasure as to whether or not it should be permanently stopped was ascertained. Later on, modifications were allowed and ultimately printing was permitted in the colony.

Source: Minutes of the Council, Feb. 25, 1682/83.