My new article, Reading Forensically: Modernist Paper, Newfoundland, and Transatlantic Materiality has just been published in the Journal for Modern Periodical Studies.
They take bast of the mulberry-tree,
That is a skin between the wood and the bark,
And of this they make paper, and mark it–Ezra Pound, “Canto XVIII”
On January 28, 1910, the New York Times printed a special cable from London announcing that “paper manufactured for Lord Northcliffe’s publications at his mills in Newfoundland were utilized in printing a part of to-day’s edition of The Evening News. . . . The paper was tried under the strictest practical conditions, and pressroom experts declared that for all purposes of newspaper printing the paper from Grand Falls was as fine as any in their experience.” The special cable marked the culmination of the five-year industrial transformation of Newfoundland from an island known for its fisheries to the principal supplier of newsprint to the English-speaking world. By 1912 Newfoundlanders were producing over sixty thousand tons of paper a year, running the largest mills on the planet, and supplying the four largest newspapers in London with the raw material of print. In effect, on or about 1910, Newfoundland’s natural timber resources began to underwrite the material production of modernity.
Read more at Project Muse