National Geographic : 1916 Oct
From the President of the Encyclopaedia Britannica I wish the public to know fully of the approaching ex haustion of the India paper issue of The Encyclopaedia Britan nica. Before I hit upon the idea of using India paper in print ing the Britannica, all encyclopaedia volumes were heavy, bulky and very awkward to consult -- volumes for the public library rather than for the home. But The Encyclopaedia Britannica on the thin, light, opaque India paper worked a re volution in publishing, and found a wider public than had ever used an encyclopaedia before, 150,000 sets of the Britannica, or 4,350,000 volumes, have already been sold, of which 97.3 per cent. were printed on India paper. To keep pace with this unprecedented sale every paper mill in the world that could make India paper worked day and night. WE HAVE USED 4,200 TONS, or 8,400,000 lbs. of it, whereas form erly only a few hundred tons were made in a year. I was encouraged by the wonderful success of the Britan nica to print The Century Dictionary, the only really adequate dictionary of the English language, on the same beautiful paper. I arranged for this -- and then our binder invented a new kind and style of binding which made it possible to issue The Cen tury Dictionary with over 8,000 pages, formerly published in 10 volumes, in a single volume. A revolving rack which can be placed on any desk or table goes with each copy. The principal raw material of India paper is a certain kind of flax grown in Germany, Belgium and Great Britain. THE WAR HAS RUINED THE FLAX INDUSTRY in those countries, not only for the present but for years to come. It has therefore elin inated India paper from the market and made impossible the reprinting of The Britannica and The Century except on old fashioned book paper. This means that anyone who desires to buy either of these works in their present ideal and perfect form must do so soon. The exact stocks on hand are as follows: (1) Of the Cambridge Issue, with large pages and large type, more than 75,000 sets have been sold, and there are only 1,700 sets remaining. Of course these will all be gone within a very short time. (2) Of the Handy Volume Britannica, which is sold at 60% less than the Cambridge Issue, 70,000 sets were sold by Sears, Roebuck and Co. of Chicago, who have exclusive sale of this issue, in the six months from January 1st to July 1st, and there are less than half that number still unsold. "Mention the Geographic-It identifies you."