Friday, July 8, 2011

MI Printing: History of Printing: Farmers' Almanac

Farmers' Almanac is an annual North American periodical that has been in continuous publication since 1818. Published by the Almanac Publishing Company, of Lewiston, Maine, it is famous for its long-range weather predictions and astronomical data, as well as its trademark blend of humor, trivia, and advice on gardening, cooking, fishing, and human-interest crusades. Conservation, sustainable living, and simplicity are core values of the publication and its editors, and these themes are heavily promoted in every edition.

The Farmers’ Almanac was founded in Morristown, New Jersey, in 1818 by editor David Young and publisher Jacob Mann; this was, co-incidentally, two years following the "year without a summer" which was an ecological disaster for farmers in northeastern America. Astronomer Samuel Hart Wright succeeded Young in 1851. Over the years, the Farmers’ Almanac has had seven editors.

Ray Geiger served as the Farmers’ Almanac's longest-running editor, from 1934 until shortly before his death in 1994. In 1955, Geiger moved production of the Farmers' Almanac from Newark, New Jersey, to its current headquarters in Lewiston, Maine. Today, his son, Peter Geiger, Philom., continues the legacy, along with Managing Editor Sandi Duncan, Philom. Duncan is the first female almanac editor in United States history.