Tag Archives: Charles Olson

Auerhahn Press

Section A: Auerhahn Press: Books & Pamphlets 1958-1965

Section B: Auerhahn Press: Broadsides 1959-1965

Section C: Auerhahn Press: Commissioned Publications 1961-1965

Section D: Dave Haselwood Books 1965-1969

While stationed with the U.S. Army in Germany during the 1950s, David Haselwood conceived the idea of becoming a publisher. At the time he was corresponding with his friend Michael McClure (also a native of Wichita, Kansas) who was living in San Francisco. McClure’s first book of poems, Passage (1956), was being published by Jonathan Williams’ Jargon Press. “Jonathan was having books printed in Germany because of the high quality and low cost,” Haselwood says, “and I began looking into things.”

When Haselwood was released from the Army, he came to live in San Francisco. According to Haselwood, “During the summer of 1958 I drifted around San Francisco talking endlessly with painters such as Robert LaVigne and Jesse Sharpe and poets [Philip] Lamantia, [Michael] McClure, [John] Wieners, and reading all the live poetry and prose I could get my hands on. It was at this time that it occurred to me that the press could mean a great many things … ” From this intense exposure to the active literary scene in the Bay Area grew the desire to see these writers published without the great delays imposed by larger printing establishments.

A short while later in 1958 appeared the first publication of the Auerhahn Press, John Wieners’s The Hotel Wentley Poems. After this initial experience, in which the actual printing was done by a commercial printer (and edited by the printer without Haselwood’s knowledge), Haselwood was convinced that he should not only design all future books himself, but also print them: “The first and final consideration in printing poetry is the poetry itself. If the poems are great they create their own space, the publisher is just a midwife during the final operation…” With this ideal in mind, Haselwood tackled the publication of Philip Lamantia’s Ekstasis, and went on to the printing of Michael McClure’s Hymns to St. Geryon.

Though its limited financial resources were drained by this last publication, the press continued its publication of controversial and avant-garde works, such as Lamantia’s pamphlet Narcotica.

Haselwood took on a partner, Andrew Hoyem, in 1961. By then, a number of Kansans had arrived in San Francisco — including Robert Branaman, who shared living quarters with Haselwood for a time, and Glenn Todd, who later worked as a pressman and editor at Arion Press, which Hoyem founded after an amicable dissolution of his Auerhahn interests in 1964. Todd remembers the partners at work at 1334 Franklin Street: “The Auerhahn was a small press in a small room. Andrew would be setting type, and Dave running the press, passing single sheets of paper through. They’d be in their blue printer’s aprons.” Branaman adds, “Dave looked like someone out of Dickens to me. His shop was a center for artists. It was a well-known center of the culture.”

Another of San Francisco’s cultural hot spots was the Batman Gallery, first owned by William Jahrmarkt, a.k.a. Billy Batman, whose art interests leaned to the visionary, the experimental and the mystical. According to Jack Foley in O Her Blackness Sparkles! The Life and Times of the Batman Art Gallery, 1960-65 (1995), the opening of the gallery was a “spectacular affair” and featured 99 pieces of Bruce Conner’s work. Auerhahn produced the announcement. In 1962, the gallery was sold to Michael Agron, a psychiatrist and University of California Medical Center associate professor who researched LSD as a therapeutic tool. Collaborating with Haselwood, Agron conceived of each exhibition’s announcement as a work of art. The first Agron show, Master-Bat, showcased the works of, among others, Conner and Branaman.

As the Beat scene faded with the ascent of Hippie culture, Haselwood continued to collaborate with artists on Dave Haselwood Books projects. He worked for a time at Arion Press and designed books for other presses, but his interest in publishing had waned by the close of the ’60s. It was time, he says, to choose another path.


References consulted:

Clay, Steven and Rodney Phillips. A SECRET LOCATION ON THE LOWER EAST SIDE: Adventures in Writing, 1960-1980
New York: New York Public Library / Granary Books, 1998

Clements, Marshall. A CATALOG OF WORKS BY MICHAEL MCCLURE, 1956-1965
New York: The Phoenix Book Shop, 1965

Johnston, Alastair. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE AUERHAHN PRESS & ITS SUCCESSOR DAVE HASELWOOD BOOKS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1976

Lepper, Gary M. A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL INTRODUCTION TO SEVENTY-FIVE MODERN AMERICAN AUTHORS
Berkeley: Serendipity Books, 1976

 

The Jargon Society

The First 50, a checklist

The following list contains only those titles appearing in the sequence beginning with Jonathan Williams’ Garbage Litters the Iron Face of the Sun’s Child (Jargon 1). Jargon Society postcards, broadsides, billboards and other ephemeral items are not included.


1. Williams, Jonathan. GARBAGE LITTERS THE IRON FACE OF THE SUN’S CHILD
jargon_garbagelitters
First edition:
(San Francisco): Jargon, 1951
Single sheet 4″ x 13″ folded twice to make a 4″ x 5″ leaflet, 50 copies. Engraving by David Ruff. Printed by David Ruff at The Print Workshop. Published as Jargon 1. (Jaffe A4)
[not in archive]

2. Oppenheimer, Joel. THE DANCER
jargon_dancerFirst edition:
Highlands: Jargon, 1951
Single sheet folded once to make a 4-page booklet, 150 copies. Illustration by Robert Rauschenberg. Printed at the The Sad Devil Press by Joel Oppenheimer at Black Mountain College. Published as Jargon 2.
[not in archive]

3. Williams, Jonathan. RED / GRAY 
a. First edition, regular copies:
Black Mountain: Jonathan Williams, January 1952
Folio sheet folded three times to make a 12-page gate-fold booklet, 8.5″ x 10″ (when folded), 100 copies. Drawings by Paul Ellsworth tipped in. Printed at the The Sad Devil Press by Joel Oppenheimer at Black Mountain College. Published as Jargon 3.

b. First edition, hardcover copies:
Black Mountain: Jonathan Williams, January 1952
Folio sheet folded three times to make a 12-page gate-fold booklet, 8.5″ x 10″ (when folded), 50 copies signed by the writer  and illustrator. Drawings by Paul Ellsworth tipped in. Printed at the The Sad Devil Press by Joel Oppenheimer at Black Mountain College. Published as Jargon 3.

4. Kalos, Victor. THE DOUBLE-BACKED BEAST
Black Mountain, 1952
Drawings by Dan Rice, 25 copies.

5. Williams, Jonathan. FOUR STOPPAGES / A CONFIGURATION
Stuttgart, 1953
Drawings by Charles Oscar, 200 copies.

6. Patchen, Kenneth. FABLES & OTHER LITTLES TALES
Karlsruhe, 1953
450 copies.

7. Olson, Charles. THE MAXIMUS POEMS / 1-10
Suttgart, 1953
Calligraphy by Jonathan Williams, 300 copies, 9″ x 12″, 46 pages plus prospectus by Creeley.

8. Creeley, Robert. THE IMMORAL PROPOSITION
First edition:
Karlsruhe: Jonathan Williams, 1953
String-bound in illustrated wrappers, 9″ x 6.5″, 200 copies. Illustrated by René Laubiès, 200 copies, 15 pages. Published as Jargon 8.

9. Olson, Charles. THE MAXIMUS POEMS / 11-22
Suttgart, 1956
Calligraphy by Jonathan Williams, 350 copies.

10. Creeley, Robert. ALL THAT IS LOVELY IN MEN
jargon_allthatAsheville: Jonathan Williams, 1955
First edition, perfect bound in illustrated wrappers, drawings by Dan Rice, photograph by Jonathan Williams, 6″ x 8″, 44 pages, 200 copies. Signed by Creeley and Rice on the colophon page. Printed by the Biltmore Press in Asheville. Published as Jargon 10. (Novik A6)

11. Patchen, Kenneth. POEM-SCAPES
Highlands, 1958.

12. Zukofsky, Louis. A TEST OF POETRY
New York, 1964.

13a. Williams, Jonathan. AMEN / HUZZA / SELAH
First edition:
Black Mountain: Jonathan Williams, Summer 1960
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated french-fold wrappers, 5.5″ x 8″, 44 pages, 700 copies. Preface by Louis Zukofsky. Photographs by Jonathan Williams. Published as Jargon 13a.

13b. Williams, Jonathan. ELEGIES AND CELEBRATIONS 
First edition:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, Summer 1962
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated french-fold wrappers, 5.5″ x 8″, 48 pages, 750 copies. Preface by Robert Duncan. Photographs by Aaron Siskind and Jonathan Williams.

13c. Williams, Jonathan. JAMMIN’ THE GREEK SCENE 
Nota by Charles Olson. Drawings by Fielding Dawson. James Jaffe notes, “Approximately 4 proof copies were produced for a projected edition of 300 copies, but the book, with a cover designed by Fielding Dawson, was never published.” Karlsruhe, 1959.

14. Duncan, Robert. LETTERS: POEMS 1953-1956
a. First edition, regular copies:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, 1958
Bound in marbled wrappers, 6.75″ x 10″, 450 numbered and signed copies. Drawings by Robert Duncan. Printed by Claude Fredericks. Published as Jargon 14.

a. First edition, hardcover copies:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, 1958
Hardcover, 6.75″ x 10″, 450 numbered and signed copies. Drawings by Robert Duncan. Printed by Claude Fredericks. Published as Jargon 14.

15. Zukofsky, Louis. SOME TIME
Sutgart, 1956
A song setting on the cover by Celia Zukofsky.

16. Oppenheimer, Joel. THE DUTIFUL SON
Highlands, 1957
Frontispiece by Joseph Fiore.

17. Perkoff, Stuart Z. THE SUICIDE ROOM 
First edition:
Karlsruhe: Jonathan Williams, 1956
Bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 7.25″ x 9″, 200 copies. Drawing by Fielding Dawson. Photograph by Charles Kessler. Published as Jargon 17.

18. Irving Layton. THE IMPROVED BINOCULARS
First edition:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, Autumn 1956
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated French-fold wrappers, 6″ x 9″, 500 copies. Introduction by William Carlos Williams. Printed by the Stephens Press in Asheville. Published as Jargon 18.

19. Denise Levertov. OVERLAND TO THE ISLANDS
a. First edition, regular copies:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, 1958
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated dust jacket, 6″ x 9.75″, 450 copies. Illustrated by Al Kresch. Calligraphy by Jonathan Williams. Printed by Heritage Printers in Charlotte. Published as Jargon 19.

a. First edition, numbered and signed copies:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, Spring 1958
Perfect-bound in printed and marbled dust jacket, 6″ x 9.75″, 50 numbered and signed copies. Illustrated by Al Kresch. Printed by Heritage Printers in Charlotte. Published as Jargon 19.

20. Michael McClure. PASSAGE
mcclure_passageFirst edition:
Big Sur: Jonathan Williams, 1956
Hand-sewn in printed wrappers, 7.25″ x 10.75″, 12 pages, 200 copies. Cover by Jonathan Williams. Printed by the Windhover Press. Published as Jargon 20.  (Clements A1)
21. Kenneth Patchen. HURRAH FOR ANYTHING 
Highlands, 1957
Drawings by Kenneth Patchen.

22. Henry Miller. THE RED NOTEBOOK
Highlands, 1958
Drawings by Henry Miller. Phorograph by Wynn Bullock.

23. Mina Loy. LUNAR BAEDEKER AND TIME-TABLES
Highlands, 1958
Introductions by William Carlos Williams, Kenneth Rexroth and Denise Levertov. Drawings by Emerson Woelffer.

24. Charles Olson. THE MAXIMUS POEMS
New York, 1960
Photograph by Frederick Sommer. Published in association with Corinth Books.

25. Paul C. Metcalf. WILL WEST
Asheville, 1956.

26. Robert Creeley. THE WHIP
Highlands, 1957
Cover design by René Laubiès. Drawings by Kirsten Hoeck.

27. Peyton Houston. SONNET VARIATIONS
Highlands, 1962
Photograph by Henry Holmes Smith.

28. Irving Layton. A LAUGHTER IN THE MIND
Highlands, 1958
Photograph by Frederick Sommer.

29. Bob Brown. 1450-1950
New York, 1959
Photograph by Jonathan Williams.

30. Jonathan Williams. THE EMPIRE FINALS AT VERONA
First edition:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, September 1959
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated French-fold wrappers, 8″ x 10.75″, 32 pages. Drawings and collage by Fielding Dawson. Published as Jargon 30.

31. Williams, Jonathan ed. 14 POETS, 1 ARTIST 
First edition:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, 1958
Unbound printed wrappers containing 14 printed pages, 5.75″ x 9″. Drawings by Fielding Dawson. Contributors include Paul Blackburn, Bob Brown, Edward Dahlberg, Max Finstein, Allen Ginsberg, Paul Goodman, Denise Levertov, Walter Lowenfels, Edward Marshall, E.A. Navaretta, Joel Oppenheimer, Gilbert Sorrentino, Jonathan Williams and Louis Zukofsky.

32. Walter Lowenfels. SOME DEATHS
Highlands, 1964
Introduction by Jonathan Williams. Photographs by Robert Schiller.

33. Robert Creeley. A FORM OF WOMEN
New York, 1959
Photograph by Robert Schiller. Published in association with Corinth Books.

34. Bob Brown. THE SELECTED POEMS 
Introduction by Kay Boyle. Drawing by Reuben Nakian. Jargon 34 was projected but never published.

35. Irving Layton. A RED CARPET FOR THE SUN
Highlands, 1959
Photograph by Harry Callahan.

36. Larry Eigner. ON MY EYES
Highlands, 1960
Introduction by Denise Levertov. Photographs by Harry Callahan.

37. Russell Edson. WHAT A MAN CAN SEE
Highlands, 1969
Drawings by Ray Johnson.

38. Giuseppe Gioachino Belli. THE ROMAN SONNETS
Highlands, 1960
Translated by Harold Norse. Preface by William Carlos Williams. Introduction by Alberto Moravia. Cover by Ray Johnson. Collage by Jean-Jacques Lebel.

39. Jonathan Williams. LORD! LORD! LORD!: TRADITIONAL FUNERAL MUSIC
First edition:
Highlands: Jonathan Williams, 1959
Folding card, handset and printed “for the friends of the Jargon Press” by Igal Roodenko.

40. Gilbert Sorrentino. THE DARKNESS SURROUNDS US
Highlands, 1960
Introduction by Joel Oppenheimer. Collage and drawings by Fielding Dawson.

41. Lou Harrison. THREE CHORUSES FROM OPERA LIBRETTI
Highlands, 1960
Jargon’s Christmas in 1960

42. Ronald Johnson. A LINE OF POETRY, A ROW OF TREES
Highlands, 1964
Drawings by Thomas George. Printed by the Auerhahn Press, San Francisco.

43. Paul C. Metcalf. GENOA: A TELLING OF WONDERS
Highlands, 1965
Iconography by Jonathan Williams.

44. Buckminster Fuller. UNTITLED EPIC POEM ON THE HISTORY OF INDUSTRIALIZATION
Highlands, 1962
Perfect-bound in printed wrappers and printed glassine dust jacket, 5″ x 7.75″. 227 pages,Introduction by Russell Davenport. Published as Jargon 44.

45. Sherwood Anderson. SIX MID-AMERICAN CHANTS
Highlands, 1964
Photographs by Art Sinsabaugh. Preface by Edward Dahlberg. Postface by Frederick Eckman

46. Guy Davenport. FLOWERS AND LEAVES
Highlands, 1966
Photograph by Ralph Eugene Meatyard.

47. Merle Hoyleman. Letters to Christopher
Introduction by George Marion O’Donnell. Jargon 47 was projected but never published.

48. Lorine Niedecker. TENDERNESS & GRISTLE: THE COLLECTED POEMS (1936-1966)
Penland: The Jargon Society, 1968
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 6″ x 10″, 2000 copies. Plant prints by A. Doyle Moore. Printed by the Falcon Press in Philadelphia

49. Alfred Hamilton Starr. POEMS
Penland, 1970
Introduction by Geof Hewitt. Drawings by Philip Van Aver. Photograph by Simpson Kalisher.

50. Doris Ulmann. THE APPALACHIAN PHOTOGRAPHS OF DORIS ULMANN
Penland, 1971
Introduction by John Jacob Nies. Preface by Jonathan Williams.


References consulted:

A Jargon Society Checklist
Books & Company 1979

Jargon at Forty: 1951-1991
SUNY, 1991