Engravers Using CRANE® Paper
International Engraved Graphics Association
The first event of record of our Association occurred in July 13, 1911 at the Sherman Hotel, Chicago, IL. This was the first Annual Convention of the National Association of Steel and Copper Plate Engravers.
Years later, the Association name was changed to Engravographia and remained unchanged through the 17th Annual Convention of July 1927. In 1928, the Association’s name was changed to Engraved Stationery Manufacturers’ Association (ESMA). Following the name change, on July 22, 1938, the Association was headquartered in Room 622 – Tower Building, Washington, DC and was incorporated as a non-profit organization under Section 101 (7) of the Internal Revenue Code.
The first ESMA Annual Convention was July 17-19, 1939 at the Hotel Pennsylvania, New York, NY. In less than three years after the first convention, World War II caused a huge shortage of copper in the Stationery Engraving industry. In order to gain effective representation with the federal government, John A. Bresnahan, a Washington, DC attorney was hired. After guiding the Association through that problem, he was retained as legal counsel and manager until February 1967.
During 1967 and 1968, discussions were conducted with Printing Industries of America for ESMA to become a special industry group of that Association. A trial period of a year was undertaken in 1968-1969. At the same time, exploratory talks took place with Printing Industry of Illinois in Chicago for the management of ESMA. In 1970, the Board voted to become affiliated with the Printing Industry of Illinois (PII) and was managed by that Association until the end of 1980.
The relationship between the Printing Industry Association of the South (PIAS) and the Engraved Stationery Manufacturers Association (ESMA) began in the autumn of 1980. The late David F. Bacon, President of PIAS was contacted by John Motsinger, President of The Jenner Company (a PIAS and ESMA member company at the time) of Louisville KY to inquire if PIAS would consider discussing the management of our Association. Representatives of the two Associations scheduled a meeting at the office of Jim Nusssmeier, ESMA Board Chairman, Nussmeier Engraving Company, Evansville, IN. Dave Bacon and a member of his staff, Harris Griggs traveled to Evansville to meet with Mr. Nussmeier and John Motsinger. The meeting resulted in a tentative agreement that ESMA would move the management from PII to PIAS, pending approval of the Board of Directors of both Associations. The Directors of both Associations approved the agreement, to be effective January 1, 1981.
December 11, 1980, Harris Griggs flew to Chicago for a transition meeting with PII staff member Dudley Robinson. PII agreed to gather and package all membership and financial records and other miscellaneous materials for the year-end change of management. December 29, 1980, PIAS staff members Harris Griggs and Bob Sims drove a rented van to Chicago to complete the move. December 30, 1980, with the assistance of Dudley Robinson, ESMA records and an inventory of miscellaneous items were loaded into the van and moved to Nashville.