Fritz Eberhardt


Letterer, printer, bookbinder. Born 1917 in Beuthen, Lower Silesia (now in Poland). 1935-8: studied bookbinding at Leipzig Akademie für graphische Künste und Buchgewerbe; taught by Ignatz Wiemeler and, when later interested in lettering, by Rudo Spemann. He was unable to complete his studies because of a shortage of finances so worked in a bookbindery. It was not until the war ended and his departure from the Soviet zone that he was able to recommence his studies, 1948-9, at the Werkkunstschule, Offenbach, where his teachers included Karlgeorg Hoefer and Hermann Zapf. 1950: taught bookbinding at Bookholzberg. 1951: worked as gilder and binder in a bookbindery at Linköping, Sweden. 1954: emigrated with wife Trudi to Philadelphia, USA. 1956: Trudi established a bookbindery at Harleysville, PA, and Eberhardt worked there and on lettering commissions until his death on 24 December 1997. Eberhardt designed the typefaces Markus and Ingrid. His binding designs were among the finest produced in the 20th century.

Writings by

  • ‘The Skill, the Trade, the Craft, and the Art’, John & Mary’s Journal, Winter 1983, Carlisle, PA, pp. 24-9
  • short essay in Bound to Vary, Mt Holly, NJ: Guild Book Workers, 1988
  • ‘Fritz Eberhardt über seine Arbeit’, Philobiblon, March 1990, pp. 36-8
  • ‘Ancient Crafts in Modern Times’, Norman, Oklahoma: Letter Arts Review, 1997, 14/1, pp. 14-19, 30-37, and 14/2, pp. 22-33.

Writings about

    Lawrence S. Thompson, ‘Fritz Eberhardt, American Binder’, The American Book Collector 10, June 1958, p. 11
  • Hans Adolf Halbey, ‘Der Buchbinder Fritz Eberhardt’, Philobiblon, March 1990, pp. 31-45
  • Don Rash, ‘In memoriam Fritz Eberhardt’, Abbey Newsletter, v. 21, no. 8, 1997 D. Rash, ‘Fritz Eberhardt’ (obituary), Guild of Book Workers Newsletter, no. 117, April 1998.


  • Temple University, 1978
  • Frankfurt, 1980 (group).