Special Collections Department
Black Stone Press Archive
Manuscript Collection Number: 316
Accessioned: Purchases 1989, 1992
Extent: 5 linear ft. and oversize material
Content: Letters, business records, broadsides, posters, galleys, and printed emphemera.
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: May 1995 by Colette Walker.
Special Collections, University of Delaware Library
Newark, Delaware 19717-5267
Table of Contents
Koch was born in Missoula, Montana in 1943. After receiving a bachelor's degree in philosophy from the University of Montana, Missoula, he spent time traveling in Europe and North Africa. While in Paris, Koch came in contact with the international Surrealist movement, and discovered the works of André Breton and Max Ernst, two influences which were to strongly impact his own work. Koch returned to Montana in 1974 and set up Black Stone Press as a forum for his own work and that of fellow surrealist poets.
The founding venture of the press was the six-issue run of Montana Gothic, a poetry journal edited and published by Koch between 1974 and 1977. Contributors included American writers as well as poets from Latin America and Europe, among them Robert Bly, Charles Henri Ford, Gabriel Weisz Carrington, Michael Poage, and Opal Nations. The journal also featured the work of such Surrealist-inspired artists as Bruce Lee. The single-volume journal Deadstart grew out of an essay by Koch in Montana Gothic #2 that called for a vital approach to both life and poetry: to scrap preconceived notions and start afresh.
While publishing Montana Gothic, Koch became increasingly interested in the printing process. He bought his first handpress in 1978, and in 1979 apprenticed himself to Adrian Wilson at the Press in Tuscany Alley in San Francisco for a year of intensive training in book arts. He relocated the press to the Bay Area the same year. Michael Poage's book of poems, Born, published in 1975, was the first of many limited edition volumes printed by Koch and his then-wife, Shelley Hoyt-Koch. Other significant books include Jane Bailey's Pomegranate of 1976, Poage's Handbook of Ornament of 1979, and Opal Nation's The Marvels of Professor Pettingruel of 1978, for which Koch provided illustrations. Koch also produced a number of broadsides during this period, most notably his Square Zero series, as well as providing job printing services for local businesses and organizations.
Since the dissolution of Black Stone Press in 1984, Koch has continued to print and publish, until 1990 under the name Peter Rutledge Koch, Typographic Design, and thereafter as Peter Koch, Printer. His work, in recent years, has focussed increasingly on the book itself as physical bearer of meaning, and has become more experimental with form, as earlier it had been with content. One example of his non-traditional approach to book arts is his Diogenes of 1994, printed in an edition of 50 copies, each unique, on lead plates and housed in an eartherware jug. Other significant book projects have included his Herakleitos of 1990 and Robinson Jeffers' Point Lobos of 1987. Koch's work has won a number of awards, including the Pushcart Prize for the Best of Small Presses for Montana Gothic in 1976 and more recently the American Library Association Award for Excellence in 1990. He has been featured in solo shows as well as group exhibitions. In addition to his printing activities, Koch is currently on the faculty at U C Berkeley's Department of Visual Studies, and since 1991, is co-director of the Tuscany Alley Project at San Francisco State University.
*See Peter Koch: Recent Work.
Sources):Peter Koch: Recent Work. Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Houghton Library, Harvard University, 1995.
Peter Koch, Printer: Cowboy Surrealists, Maverick Poets & Pre-Socratic Philosophers . New York; San Francisco: New York Public Library; San Francisco Public Library, 1995.
Note: Biographical information has also been derived from material in the collection.
Scope and Content Note
The collection is organized in three series. The first consists of printed material, including preparatory materials for Montana Gothic, Deadstart, books, and broadsides, as well as job printing, the latter arranged by client and by year. The second series contains correspondence, consisting primarily of letters and manuscripts from contributors and potential contributors to Montana Gothic. The third series includes business records for 1974-1984, including bank statements, grant applications, and tax documents. The fourth and final series consists of books and literary journals printed by Black Stone Press. The collection and this finding aid include a bibliography of all titles received with the collection, a number of which have been cataloged and are available in Special Collections. Two oversize boxes contain material removed from Series I and II.
Series List I. Printed Material 1. Journals - Montana Gothic - Deadstart 2. Books 3. Broadsides 4. Instructional Materials 5. Job Printing - By Client - By Year II. Correspondence III. Business Records 1. Grant Proposals 2. Other Business Records III. Published Books and Journals 1. Journals 2. Books
1 Series I. Printed Material Includes preparatory material toward publishing projects such as journals, books, and broadsides; posterboard flats used by Shelley Hoyt-Koch as teaching aids in demonstrating how to design and paint books; and job printing arranged in two subseries: alphabetically by client and by date. Series I.1. Journals F1 Montana Gothic #1 F2 Montana Gothic #2 F3 Montana Gothic #3 F4 Montana Gothic #4 F5 Montana Gothic #4 (continued) F6 Montana Gothic #5 F7 Montana Gothic #6 F8 Montana Gothic Headlines and Cover Art F9 Montana Gothic - Bruce Lee artwork F10 Deadstart Series I.2. Books (dates following titles indicate publication dates) F11 ABC XYZ (1980) - Kate Pond F12 Five Poems (1980) - Michael Poage F13 Handbook of Ornament (1979) - Michael Poage F14 Handbook of Ornament (continued) F15 Harris, Paul (artist's book, not completed) F16 Marvels of Professor Pettingruel (1978) - Opal Nations Series I.2. Books (continued) 1 F17 Near the Ocean's Edge (1982) - Charles Morris F18 Poison in the System (1979) - David Highsmith F19 Pomegranate (1976) - Jane Bailey F20 Reflections on Color (1982) - Susan Roether F21 Reflections on Color (continued) F22 Severson, Elizabeth Hartzell (1983) F23 Shooting Scripts (1978) - Adam Cornford F24 Shreds (1982) - Malles Meje F25 This flower! (1982) - Robert Sund 2 F26 Weeding the Dutchess (1979) - Sarah Maclay Series I.3. Posters & Broadsides F27 Posters & broadsides F28 Square Zero broadsides Series I.4. Printing Instruction F29 Posterboard flats Series I.5. Job Printing By Client F30 American Library Association F31 Antin, Charles 2 F32 Antin, Eleanor F33 The Asia Company F34 Philippe Bonnafont Gallery F35 Philippe Bonnafont Gallery (continued) F36 Philippe Bonnafont Gallery (continued) F37 Book Club of California F38 Brickers International Directory F39 Brick Row Book Shop F40 California Academy of Medicine F41 California Arts Council F42 City Hall Records Distribution F43 Lon Clark Association F44 College of Notre Dame F45 D'Allessandro, Pat F46 D'Allessandro, Pat - Penumbra F47 Doan, Mr. & Mrs. Leland F48 Gleeson Library Association F49 Hendrickson, H. F50 Imago Handpaper Mill Series I.5. Job Printing By Client (continued) 2 F51 Johnson, David F52 Nob Hill Association F53 North Point Gallery F54 Oyez Press F55 Richie, George F56 Rosenthal, Bernard F57 Roxburghe Club of San Francisco F58 San Francisco Art Commission F59 San Francisco Ecology Center F60 Stanford University F61 Sund, Robert F62 Team Edserv, Inc. F63 Turtle Island Foundation F64 U.C. Berkeley F65 U.C. Berkeley (continued) F66 University of California Press F67 Wayzgoose 1979 F68 Johnson Turnbull Vineyards F69 Zeller, Valaoritis, Kuznicki Series I.5. Job Printing By Year 2 F70 1975 F71 1976 F72 1977 F73 1978 F74 1979 F75 1980 3 F76 1981 F77 1982 F78 1982 (continued) Series II. Correspondence F79 Aaron, Richard F80 Allen, Lewis F81 Auster, Paul F82 Bailey, Jane F83 Blazek, Douglas F84 Bly, Robert F85 Bowles, Paul F86 Brown, Paul F87 Burke, Jim Series II. Correspondence (continued) 3 F88 Carrington, Gabriel Weisz F89 Cherry Valley Editions F90 Codrescu, Andrei F91 Churry, Craig F92 Clifton, Merritt F93 Cornford, Adam F94 Digby, John F95 Dobb, Edwin F96 Estrin, Jerry F97 Flick, Steven F98 Ford, Charles Henri F99 Furguson, Frank F100 Garner,Sky F101 Ginsberg, Allen F102 Goldbarth, Albert F103 Grillo, Paul F104 Hammer, Louis F105 Harkness, Edward F106 Harrold, William F107 Hart, Howard Series II. Correspondence (continued) 3 F108 Helman, Cecil F109 Hubenthal, Mahlon F110 Johnson, Dana William F111 Koch, Michael F112 Landes-Levi, Louise F113 Leale, B.C. F114 Lee, Bruce F115 Levine, Philip F116 Long, David F117 McElroy, Jackie F118 Magorian, James F119 Malanga, Gerard F120 Mansour, Joyce F121 Marcus, G. Karl F122 Miles, Milo F123 Montague, Tony F124a Nations, Opal F124b Nations, Opal - publications F125 Nord, Carolann F126 Norse, Harold Series II. Correspondence (continued) 3 F127 Parlatore, Anselm F128 Petty, Ryan F129 Piper, Paul F130 Plymell, Charles F131 Poage, Michael F132 Poage, Michael (continued) 4 F133 Potts, Charlie F134 Robbins, Doren F135 Shatis, G./Bardo Matrix F136 Shukofsky, Eileen F137 Stainton, Albert F138 Taylor, Tom F139 Thomas, Dave F140 Todd, Patrick F141 Valaoritis, Nanos & Marie Wilson F142 Van Sickle, Dirck F143 Vega, Janine Pommy F144 Wilson, Marie (See F141, Valaoritis) F145 Wechsler, Soshana F146 Weisz, Paul (Pablo) Series II. Correspondence (continued) 4 F147 White, Cynthia F148 Whitson, Peter F149 Wood, Wilbur F150 Yenne, Bill F151 Young, Gary F152 Zawadiwsky, Christine F153 Zeller, Ludwig F154 Other Correspondence: A-D F155 Other Correspondence: E-H F156 Other Correspondence: I-P F157 Other Correspondence: Q-Z Series III. Business Records Includes grant proposals, bank records, and other business documents related to operation of Black Stone Press. Series III.1. Grant Proposals F158 Coordinating Council of Literary Magazines (CCLM) 1976-1977 F159 CCLM 1979-1979 F160 CCLM Editors' Fellowship 1979 F161 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) 1977-1978 F162 NEA 1978-1979 Series III.2. Other Business Records 4 F163 NEA 1980-1981 F164 Montana Grants F165 Contributor Lists F166 Montana Writers Co-op F167 Subscriptions F168 Distribution and Advertisements F169 Distribution and Advertisements (continued) F170 Sales & Property Taxes F171 Licences & Permits F172 Deposits F173 Fictitious Name Statements F174 Leases F175 Accounts Payable 1975-1976 F176 Accounts Receivable 1975-1976 F177 Accounts Payable 1977 5 F178 Accounts Receivable 1977 F179 Accounts Payable 1978 F180 Accounts Receivable 1978 F181 Bank Statements 1974-1975 F182 Bank Statements 1976 Series III.2. Other Business Records (continued) 5 F183 Bank Statements 1976 (continued) F184 Bank Statements 1977 F185 Bank Statements 1977 (continued) F186 Bank Statements 1977 (continued) F187 Bank Statements 1978 (Western Montana) F188 Bank Statements 1978 (Western Montana, continued) F189 Bank Statements 1978 (Hibernia) F190 Other business records, 1975-1981
Series IV. Books and Journals (Box 5) Books that remain with the collection are indicated with an asterisk (*). All others have been cataloged and transferred to the printed holdings of Special Collections. Series III.1. Journals Deadstart: a Journal of Letters, Design and Typographical Printmaking, 1980. Two copies. (one copy)* Montana Gothic #1, Fall 1974. Montana Gothic #2, Spring 1975. Montana Gothic #3, Fall 1975. Montana Gothic #4, Spring 1976. Montana Gothic #5, Winter 1977. Montana Gothic #6, Fall 1977. Series IV.2. Books Bailey, Jane. Pomegranate. Missoula, Montana: Black Stone Press, 1976. Bessac, Susanne and Jo Rainbolt. Notes on Traditional Hmong Culture from Montana Hmong Recollections. Missoula, Montana: Missoula Museum of the Arts, (no date). Designed by Peter Koch.* Bessac, Susanne. Persian Rugs. Missoula, Montana: Missoula Museum of the Arts, 1977. Designed and printed by Peter Koch.* California Private Academic Libraries. Striking Research Gold: Distinguished Collections in California Independent Academic Libraries, 1988. Designed and printed by Peter Koch.* Colette. Cheri. San Francisco: George F. Ritchie, 1983. Designed and printed by Peter Koch. Cornford, Adam. Shooting Scripts. Missoula, Montana: Black Stone Press, 1978. Two copies, hard- and softcover. Series IV.2. Books (continued) Dinnean, Lawrence. Les Jeunes: An Account of Some Fin de Siecle San Francisco Authors and Artists. San Francisco: The Friends of the Bancroft Library, 1980. Designed and printed by Peter Koch. Farmer, David and Rennard Strickland. A Trumpet of Our Own. San Francisco: The Book Club of California, 1981. Designed and printed by Peter Koch.* Highsmith, David. Poison in the System. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1979. Two copies, hard- and softcover. Meje, Malles. Shreds. San Francisco: Beatrice Love Kaukonen, 1982. Designed and printed by Peter Koch. Morris, Charles Kendrick. Near the Ocean's Edge. San Francisco: Charles Kendrick Morris, 1982. Designed and printed by Peter Koch. Maclay, Sarah. Weeding the Dutchess. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1979. Two copies, hard- and softcover. Nations, Opal L. The Marvels of Professor Pettingruel. Missoula, Montana: Black Stone Press, 1978. Two copies, hard- and softcover. Penzi, James. Salt Fever. San Francisco: Isthmus Press, 1976. Gift from author to Koch.* Poage, Michael. Born. Missoula, Montana: Black Stone Press, 1975. Poage, Michael. Five Poems. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1980. Poage, Michael. Handbook of Ornament. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1979. Poage, Michael. Wings of Hair. Missoula, Montana: Black Stone Press, 1978. Pond, Kate. ABC XYZ. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1980. Roether, Susan. Reflections on Color. San Francisco: Black Stone Press 1982. Silberg, Richard. The Reckoning. San Francisco: Black Stone Press, 1979. Sund, Robert. This flower! La Conner: The Great Blue Heron Society, 1982. Designed and printed by Peter Koch. Thomas, David. Fossil Fuel. Missoula, Montana: The Montana Writer's Cooperative, 1977. Designed and printed by Peter Koch.
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