HILIP R. BISHOP (b. 1951) is co-author of Thomas Bird Mosher & the Art of the Book, and his articles have appeared in BIBLIO magazine and elsewhere. This independent scholar has made Mosher both his collecting and research passions. In July of 1998 he finished the new Mosher bibliography, Thomas Bird Mosher-Pirate Prince of Publishers co-published by The British Library and Oak Knoll Press. The more humorous side to some of his bibliographical toils was captured in " A Rosary of Limericks for PRB, but a more sobering side appears in his tribute to Dick Fredeman, a dear departed friend who wrote the Introduction to the new Mosher bibliography.
The author has been a rare books specialist since 1988, after leaving his fourteen-year career as an administrator at Millersville University to work in the rare book trade. He owns and operates the firm, Mosher Books, which is a member of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America (ABAA) and of the International League of Antiquarian Book-sellers (ILAB). He is a member of various library "friends" groups, including The Folger Shakespeare Library, and is also a member of The William Morris Society.
Bishop holds a bachelor's degree from Millersville University, and has pursued advanced master's studies in philosophy at Villanova University. He is the father of two grown and married children, Benjamin and Melissa, grandfather to Sophia Regina Zane, and currently resides, with his wife, Susann, and their feline friends, Miss Tess, Toby, Sasha, and Sabrina in Ephrata, Pennsylvania.
Any information on, or questions about, Thomas Bird Mosher or The Mosher Books may be directed to Philip R. Bishop.
Bishop, Philip R, "THE BIBELOT - Thomas Bird Mosher's Vision of Introduction" PowerPoint presentation at the Grolier Club on March 13, 2013 as part of the program supporting the exhibition "American Little Magazines of the 1890s: A Revolution in Print" (Feb. 20-April 27, 2013).
---, "An Association of Note: Willa Cather's Copy of Aucassin & Nicolet", "One Returned to the Fold, Four Newly Added, and Then Some" and "American Little Magazines of the 1890s: A Revolution in Print" in the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers, March 2013, pp. 3-5, 23-24, and 33-34 respectively. The first essay discusses a Mosher edition of of Aucassin & Nicolete once owned by Willa Cather and given to her by Isabelle McClung while they lived in Pittsburgh, PA. The second announces the return of a Mosher book hand-illuminated by Clara Chipman Newton of Rookwood Pottery fame. It also presents newly added books from Thomas Bird Mosher's library: Thomas Hardy's The Dynasts (1904/1908), the Vale Press edition of Julia Domna (1903), Maurice Hewlett's A Masque of Dead Florentines (1895) and Earthwork out of Tuscany (1895), the latter containing Mosher's notes and purchase details. Several other "family owned" additions to the Mosher Press collection are also discussed. The third and final essay is on the new Grolier Club exhibition of the "American Little Magazines" and which items from the Bishop Collection of the Mosher Press appear in the exhibition.
---, "Rockwell Kent's 'Mosher Book' Reformulation" and "Ten Biblio-Snippets" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2012, pp. 1-2 and 21-22 respectively. The first essay preliminarily discusses the acquisition of a unique Kentiana item for which Bishop had been searching for over twenty-four years. This essay introduces the reader to its description and former record of its existence, but only hints at the exact details of the "find" which will have to wait for separate publication. The second listing briefly covers such entries as: Bishop's participation in the Ticknor Society's Tenth Anniversary program; the appearance of one of Mosher's customers, Emilie Grigsby, in the recent Grolier Club exhibition of Ray Stafford, Rare Bookman; materials related to The Bibelot slated for exhibition at the Grolier Club in 2013; a fore-edge painting sold through MOSHER BOOKS in the Annotated Dictionary of Fore-edge Painting, Artists and Binders; the acquisition of yet another Toof Bindery-Otto Zahn binding; engraved stones at Acorn Cottage; a Theodore Roosevelt collector who has risen through the ranks; Malcolm Haslam's exhibition catalogue, Arts & Crafts Book Covers; the acquisition of a Mosher book and letter from Cambridge, England; and Ellen Terry's letters to Mosher slated for later publication.
---, "Take that Mr. Quinn!", "Princes may compete for, but only Huntingtons can buy", and "So, what's next?" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. March 2012, pp. 3-6, 14-16, and 23-26 respectively. The first two-part essay is concerned with the climbing number of Mosher books printed on real vellum resulting from the acquisition of John Hay's In Praise of Omar (Mosher, 1898) bound by the Club Bindery. With this acquisition the Bishop Collection's holding have surpassed John Quinn's holdings. The second essay is really a sequel to the first and discusses the purchase of the large quarto Memories of President Lincoln and Other Lyrics of War (Mosher, 1912) printed on real vellum and its all-round importance in the book world. A census of other vellum copies is also presented. The last essay, "So what's next?" covers the new directions of Mr. Bishop's collecting and the use of the Mosher Press Collection as a resource for scholars worldwide.
---, "A Few more Acquisitions," "A storm sans égal" "Ever More the Association Copy," and "A little Stash from the Berkshires." In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2011, pp. 5-7, 21-25, 29-30, and 35-36 respectively. Numerous new items have entered the Bishop Collection on T. B. Mosher and the Mosher Press as highlighted in the first and last essays listed above. The second essay dealing with a "perfect storm" of acquisitions announces three major additions involving: an important bindings collection; a Mosher book inscribed by William Butler Yeats and accompanied by a letter from his sister, Lily Yeats; and the inclusion of a number of letters and highly interesting material from Mosher's close friend, Gustav Percival Wiksell. The essay "Ever More the Association Copy" covers the brief story of how the newly published Other Peoples Books (Caxton Club, 2011) was itself augmented by an important item making for a "dynamic duo" of an association copy.
---, "The Serendipitous Find still awaits the traveler to real book stores," "Thomas Hutchinson Reconsidered," "Some Additional Finds prior to year's end to the present," "A Brief Note on the Stinehour Press's Working Collection," and "The Cowdin Catalogue." In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. March 2011, pp. 3-4, 11-13, 19-21, 23, and 27-29 respectively.
---, "From My Hands to Yours: Uncovering the Tynan-Wyndham Connection." In Other People's Books--Association Copies and the Stories They Tell. Chicago: The Caxton Club, 2011, pp. 128-131. Although a lesser version of this essay appeared in Endpapers, this extensively revised and expanded essay appears in the Caxton Club publication for the first time. Those interested in getting a copy of Other People's Books may do so by contacting either the Caxton Club or Oak Knoll Books.
---, "Serving the Pre-Raphaelites on Blue China: America's Thomas Bird Mosher Phenomena." PowerPoint presentation at the Useful & Beautiful--The Transatlantic Arts of William Morris & The Pre-Raphaelites Conference held at the University of Delaware, October 7-9, 2010.
---, "One of my Few Entrances into the World of Blogs," "Another Textual Source brought into the Fold." "A Few Ruminations over a Binding," "Plodding Along," and "A Sad Remembrance." In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2010, pp. 7-8, 13-15, 24-26, 36-38, and 39 respectively. The first essay is a humorous exchange between a blogger and Bishop in which Bishop corrects some of the blogger's impressions while the second deals with another added book in the Mosher collection to others which Mosher edited. The third essay describes an Arts & Crafts binding with an oak leaf & acorn design. The fourth is concerned with how the collector can add small acquisitions which might become important ones when combined with others. Lastly the death of bookman, John Ballinger, is briefly discussed.
---, "A little bit of this... and a little bit of that..." and "The William Roberts of Rose Valley Connection" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. March 2010, pp. 6-10 and p.23. The first essay involves a number of purchases over the past few months of 2009 and into 2010 including association copies, a pure vellum milestone reached, and acquisition of the earliest known Mosher Press letter in the Bishop Collection. the second essay is concerned with a small archive of material written by Mosher to a member of the Rose Valley community outside of Philadelphia.
---, "Hard to find Ephemera and a Lesson Learned," "Welcome Ellen," "The Bigger Strikes Aren't Over," "A Bubble Burst," and "When Bored, Think Up a Different Tact" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2009, pp. 6-8, 21, 29-32, 39-40 and 44-45. The ephemera article discusses a long sought keepsake broadside printed by Emily Woodward and how the search for the source of the Mosher statement quoted led to textual discoveries; the Ellen essay discusses the welcome of an Ellen Gates Starr binding; "Bigger Strikes" is about a find of material from the Flora lamb estate; the "Bubble Burst" covers what might have been Mosher's copy of Bell's British Theatre, and "When Bored..." takes a different tact on approaching dealers with material of moderate interest.
---. "Another Fish off the Hook" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. March 2009, pp. 8-10. Discusses how a Mosher book sold many years ago made its way back to Bishop's Mosher collection.
Bishop, Philip R. and Susann M. "Garver's Castle on the Hill--A 1928 Gordon-Van Tine bungalow shines on thanks to respectful, appreciative homeowners" in Cottages & Bungalows (Reader Scrapbook feature), February / March 2009, pp. 84-85. With thanks to the editor, Hillary Black, permission was granted to mount these pages as seen in Cottages & Bungalows magazine. For further information please visit cottagesandbungalowsmag.com
Bishop, Philip R. "Extra Binding and the Mosher Books--An Overview from the Bishop Collection" and Shawn Purcell, "An Interview with Philip R. Bishop of MOSHER BOOKS" in The IOBA Standard--The Journal of the Independent Online Booksellers Association. Vol. IX, No. 4, Fall 2008 (posted December 2008). Available at http://ioba.org/newsletter/index.html.
---. "Garver's Castle on the Hill" in Transparencies, Reflections, Light: Photographic Views of the Cocalico Valley. Ephrata, PA: The Historical Society of the Cocalico Valley, 2008, pp. 20-21 (and reference footnotes).
---. "To be Mentioned is Gratifying," "Receiving the Unexpected," "Welcome Home Miss Emilie," and "To Delay is not Necessarily Bad" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2008, pp. 1, 5-6, 6-7 and 21-23 respectively.
---, transcriber/editor. "Mosher's Poetic Reflections on Soldiers' Monument / Monument Square, Portland, Maine." Keepsake of a hitherto unpublished two-page poem (working copy) on the "Our Lady of Victories" statue at which Memorial Day's festivities are celebrated by Portlanders each year. Limited to 80 numbered and signed copies and 20 inscribed copies lettered A-T. Printed in commemoration of the well received, rather dynamic PowerPoint presentation "Thomas Bird Mosher and the Mosher Books as seen through The Bishop Collection" to The Baxter Society (Maine's only book club) on May 14th, 2008.
Bishop, Philip R. "The Lost Galleon Found" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. March 2008, pp. 18-20. Details the process whereby a book customer's gift, Mosher's note laden copy of Bret Hart's The Lost Galleon and Other Tales (San Francisco, 1867), lead to the decision to research and write the biography of Thomas Bird Mosher.
(Bishop, Philip R., subject) Greene, Jo-Ann (books editor). "Following his bibliobliss: Collector scores book that 'starred' in film." In "Perspectives" section of the Lancaster Sunday News. December 23, 2007, p. P4.
Bishop, Philip R. "A Collection within a Collection" and "Source Texts from a Publisher" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. September 2007, pp. 7-10 and 21-22 respectively. "A Collection within a Collection" singles out one sub-collection from among ten such inner collections. In this case it's Mosher books printed on real vellum and how close the collector is to equaling if not surpassing the Norman Stores collection in this area. The "Source Texts from a Publisher" is concerned with the newly acquired biography of James Thomson, H.S. Salt's The Life of James Thomson ("B.V."), which contains numerous notations by Mosher and displays his editorial marks for The Bibelot and how this book related to a letter from Mosher in the collection.
---, "This Business of Collecting" and "A Pre- Post-Mortum Addition to a Book Collection" In the Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers. Special issue entitled "An Anthology of Articles from Endpapers 1994-2002," Spring 2007, pp. 21-22 and 37-38. The editor notes: "This anthology was assembled in the spring of 2007 as part of our celebration of the 30th anniversary of our club. This will give newer members an overview of some of the articles we have published in the past... In selecting articles we sought, where possible to have ones that dealt with the adventures or discoveries made as a book collector..." There is a total of thirty-three authors selected covering forty-one contributions.
---, "When a List begins to Dwindle--Memento Mori" In Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers, March 2007, pp. 7-10. This essays deals with the acquisition of select books from a fellow Mosher collector's library, the affect on Bishop's Wants List, and how this process leads to thoughts toward the one's own final years/months/days of collecting, however many or few they may be.
---, "Taking Stock." In Delaware Bibliophiles' Endpapers, September 2006, pp. 19-20. A brief overview of numerous purchases including association copies of the Mosher Books, the acquisition of a couple extra-illuminated Mosher books, and a brief overview of an archive of Mosher correspondence to publisher bookseller Charles S. Pratt.
---, "Once and Twice Missed." In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2006, pp. 9-14."
---, "The French Connection: Thoughts from a Pandit in Switzerland," "Lights, Action, Camera," "More Primary Sources & Bibliopegic Delights" and "The Burden of a Large Collection." In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, September 2005, pp. 7-14, 23-28, 34-36, and 39 respectively. "The French Connection..." deals with Bishop's long-distance friendship with Richard McErlean and how this lead to a "book find" through the internationally known book scout, Martin Stone of Paris. The second essay covers the steps taken to secure the actual Mosher book used in an upcoming movie directed by Isabel Coixet entitled "The Secret Life of Words" starring Tim Robbins. The third is a brief rundown on some new acquisitions for Bishop's Mosher collection including an inscribed Mosher book by Hilaire Belloc, and several fine bindings on Mosher books (Hatchards, Battershall, etc.). The last brief one-page essay touches upon how the riches of association copies precluded buying a non-association copy of the same book.
---, " At the Opening of the Club Bindery Exhibition," "A Thanksgiving Cornucopia Spilling Over into December," "A Long Overdue Trip to Portland" and "From My Hands to Yours: Uncovering the Tynan-Wyndham Connection." In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2005, pp. 2-4, 9-15, 23-26, and 31-33 respectively. The first essay covers Bishop's personal reflections while attending the Club Bindery Exhibition including the four entries in which he had some involvement, and with some discussion on the Mosher books and fellow attendees at the exhibit. The second essay covers a wide range of items vigorously sought and purchased for the Mosher collection. The essay on the Portland details some of the purchases made while visiting some favorite haunts in Mosher's hometown area. Lastly, the essay on Tynan & Wyndham reveals a loving connection between two literary types who exchanged somewhat intimate correspondence but who regrettably never met.
---, "Thomas Bird Mosher (Fine and Beautiful Books)" in Warren G. Bennice, ed. Dominant's Encyclopedia of Movers & Shakers--Social & Cultural Celebrities. Vol. 2. New Delhi, India: Dominant Publisher and Distributors, 2004, pp. 324-327. Unattributed article taken without permission from the Mosher Press website.
---, "Unexpected Kindnesses," "The Mosher Bookplate," "A Little Celebration" and "More Kindnesses Remembered - An Addendum." In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, September 2004, pp. 3-8, 13-15, 20-21, and 23-26 respectively. The first essays deals with the kind things some individuals have done to support the Mosher collection assembled by Bishop. "The Mosher Bookplate" essay involves an exchange with James Keenan and Mosher's entry in his The Art of the Bookplate as discussed with Thomas G. Boss. The "Little Celebration" is concerned with the completion of the scarcest series in the Mosher canon: the Reprints from 'The Bibelot' Series. "More Kindnesses" is just that, a continuation of the first essay bringing matters up-to-date.
---, "The Mosher Mimes the Merrier," "Mosher and Dr. Butterworth," "The Wailing Wall," and "Influences through the Mosher Press Website." In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2004, pp. 1, 7-10, 17-18, and 25-28 respectively. The first brief essay deals with a sub-collection of Marcel Schwob's Mimes; the next essay with the relationship Bishop had with the elderly gentleman, Dr. Theron Butterworth, a book lover whose mother corresponded with Mosher; the third essay is about the placement of two symbols of book disasters; and the fourth touches upon how the Mosher Press website facilitates contact between scholars and the website's compiler.
---, "Garden Correspondences" in Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, September 2003, pp. 31-33. Discusses the development and organization of a perennial garden and its comparison to a collection in a private library.
---, interview by Allan Stypeck and Mike Cuthbert, The Book Guys, National Public Radio, March 20, 2003. During this interview (#0312) Phil Bishop of Mosher Books discusses his passion for collecting and introduces listeners to the early twentieth century "private press" publisher of Portland, Maine: Thomas Bird Mosher.
---,. "William E. Fredeman, 1928-1999" Obituary in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of Canada. 2001 Sixth Series, Volume XII., 2002, pp. 139-143.
---, "Deliberations on a Letter" In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2003, pp. 25-28. Discusses the decision making process behind the acquisition of an original 2 1/4 page letter from the British poet, Lionel Johnson, which rails against Thomas Bird Mosher and his appropriation of Johnson essay on Robert Bridges. The essay also reveals how the recipient of the letter, Thomas Hutchinson (editor, minor poet and book collector), was discovered and confirmed.
---, comp., and Introduction in A B.R. QUARTET--Letters from Bruce Rogers to Thomas Bird Mosher at The Houghton Library. The Typophiles Monograph Series. New York: The Typophiles, Inc., 2001.
---, "B.R. on T. B. M." A Keepsake for The Typophiles. Lmtd. to 75 copies. Distributed to members at the talk "Some Stylistic Elements of the Books of Thomas B. Mosher." June 14, 2000.
---, "B.R. on T. B. M." A Keepsake for The Philobiblon Club. Lmtd. to 75 copies. Distributed to members at the talk "The Mosher Books in Some of Their Graphical Aspects." May 9, 2000.
---, " A Pre- Post-Mortem Addition to a Book Collection. " In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2000, pp. 17-18.
---, "A Report from the Front Lines in May 2001" in Delaware Bibliophiles Endpapers, September 2001, pp. 7-11. In addition to the discussion on several new Mosher acquisitions to the Bishop collection, this article provides a lengthy discussion about the newly acquired Curtis Hidden Page copy of The Germ (Mosher, 1898, one of twenty-five copies on Japan vellum) bound by the Guild of Women-Binders.
---, "From ' The Petite Memoirs of a Petty Book Collector ' " In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, September 2000, pp. 19-22. Includes an explanation of how "petite" and "petty" are being employed, and an entertaining story of how a Bruce Rogers item from Mosher's library, with letter from Fred Coykenall (chairman of trustees of Columbia University and an Arthur Rackham collector), finally came to rest in the Bishop collection.
(Bishop, Philip R., subject) Fredeman, William E. "A Rosary of Limericks for PRB" In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, March 2000, p. 12.
---, "The Business of Collecting" In Delaware Bibliophiles-Endpapers, September 1999.
---, Review of "S. A. Neff, Jr. Catalogue" in Guild of Book Workers Newsletter 123 (April 1999): 13-15.
---, Thomas Bird Mosher : Pirate Prince of Publishers--A Comprehensive Bibliography and Source Guide to The Mosher Books Reflecting England's National Literature and Design. New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press; London: The British Library, 1998.
---, ed., and Scott Anderson, website designer and coordinator. The Mosher Press. Online. Internet. 15 June 1998-present. Website address at http://www.millersville.edu/~mosher/index.html (updated periodically).
---, "Thomas Bird Mosher--Publishing Prince... or Pirate?" In BIBLIO-The Magazine for Collectors of Books, Manuscripts and Ephemera 2:7 (July 1997): 38-45.
---, and Jean-François Vilain. Thomas Bird Mosher and the Art of the Book. Philadelphia, PA: F. A. Davis Co., 1992.
---, and Jean-François Vilain. "The Covers of The Mosher Books" in TBR -- Trade Bindings Research Newsletter, edited by Linda Herman and Cynthia Bruns of California State University at Fullerton Library. Issue #5, June 1992, pp. 16-20.
---, "Thomas Bird Mosher--A Remembrance." In The National Book Collector 2:3 (May/June 1991).
---, "The Peace Activities of Rufus D. Bowman, 1931-1936." In Brethren Life and Thought 20:2 (Spring 1975): 97-103.Return to top