An independent archive of typography.

Midnight Sailing

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Oct 31st, 2014. Artwork published in .
Midnight Sailing
Source: scanned and retouched by Paul Malon. License: All Rights Reserved.

American ad for North German Lloyd’s transatlantic sea passages from 1936, in Element schmalfett (1934). While there apparently was the desire to convey a deliberate teutonic look by using one of the new streamlined texturas which mushroomed in the first years of the Third Reich, Element’s gotisch H was considered to be too much, and illegible to American eyes: It got replaced by a romanized creation with a clunky foot swash. The “long s” (ſ) has been foregone, too.

The shaded upright script provides a classy contrast, and likely is not a font. On a related note to the altered H, the final letter with straight descender in the script would probably pass for a g only in the US, cf. the Berghoff sign.

1 Comment on “Midnight Sailing”

  1. The Element type specimen (Bauer, 1934) includes a number of exemplary uses. Interestingly, there is an ad for a sea passage aboard Norddeutscher Lloyd’s Columbus among them, as well as a tourism ad for the city of Bremen (Bremen and Europa were the largest ocean liners by Norddeutscher Lloyd).

    Source: Bleisatzschriften des 20. Jahrhunderts aus Deutschland by Hans Reichardt (ed.)

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