The Plimpton Bros.

Herbert and Howard Plimpton were brothers who were in business together. They were raised by their single mother, as their father died when they were little boys; they grew up in Walpole, an area called Plimptonville. Herbert was the businessman who knew how to grow a company and Howard enjoyed toying with mechanics.

Herbert Mosley Plimpton

(May 13, 1859 – April 23, 1948)

Herbert M. Plimpton was the second youngest child of Calvin Gay Plimpton and Priscilla Guild. He attended schools in Walpole and then went to Williston Seminary, a preparatory school in Northampton, Massachusetts, graduating in 1878. After Herbert completed his studies at Williston, he obtained an apprenticeship at a bookbindery in New York City; he had some early experience with typesetting and using a printing press, which may have been what attracted him to this position.  It was here where Herbert learned how to bind books by hand. In 1882, he bought a New York bookbindery business and moved it to Boston. In 1897, the company settled into their new facility in Norwood, where they remained for the next seventy years. Herbert was also the owner of Holliston Mills, this company made Glutino, a flexible bookbinding glue and book cover cloth. Plimpton lived in Norwood and was involved in many town organizations.


Howard Emerson Plimpton

(April 7, 1862 – January 3, 1899)

Howard E. Plimpton was the youngest child of Calvin Gay Plimpton and Priscilla Guild. Howard attended local Walpole schools and  Phillips Exeter Academy; upon graduating he went to work for his brother, Herbert at his bookbindery in Boston, and for a time he was a superintendent at Ginn & Company Athenaeum Press at their Cambridge, Massachusetts facility. Howard learned all about the book making industry in these two positions, in fact, he had a knack for machinery. He and his brothers Herbert and Lewis, invented several machines that made book making easier. In 1900, a patent was filed for a casing in books (used to cover books). Howard also invented a practical gathering machine, which was used in the bookbinding process. The Plimptons also made and sold these machines to other printing companies.

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