These two before & after images will give you an idea of what I did in order to get my replica of this 1777 Aitken New Testament ready to print. Below you will see the title page from our original 1777 Robert Aitken New Testament and our replica of this same book.
Robert Aitken first advertised his New Testament for sale in the August 28, 1777 edition of the Pennsylvania Evening Post. See below:
The transcription of this ad is below:
“Just printed (bound and ready for sale) by R. Aitken, printer and bookseller, opposite the London Coffee-house, Frontstreet, a neat edition of THE NEW TESTAMENT for the use of schools, where may be had writing paper of different kinds, particularly letter paper of the first quality, and several hundreds of excellent quills.”
Before the Revolution, it had been impossible to print an English language version of the Bible in the colonies because no American printers held a license from the King granting permission to print the Bible. The war cut off shipments of Bibles from Great Britain and also got rid of the need for the license; thereby creating a shortage of Bibles and the ability to print them in America.
Robert Aitken stepped in to fill this void. Beginning in 1777, Aitken began publishing and selling New Testaments. Demand was heavy, so every year, for the next five years, Aitken published a new edition of his New Testament. In total, he published five editions: Aitken’s second edition was published in 1778; his third in 1779; his fourth in 1780; and finally his last and fifth edition was published in 1781.
I am currently making three of these New Testaments. One is spoken for, but the other two will be available, when finished. To see how I hand bind these New Testaments, please visit our web page at the following link: Click Here