Printing Industry

of Chattanooga, Tennessee

Ó Copyright 2002 by Bookout and Henson



On Thursday August 22, 2002, and for several weeks thereafter, H. Robert Bookout and JWHenson went to the Chattanooga Bicentennial Library to investigate the history by years of printers in the Chattanooga area.  Chattanooga City Directories are available from 1871 to 2000.   Many of the printers went out of business during the depression of the 1930s.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive history, but more of an overview of those who have come and gone in the field of printing.  We did not review every year, but approximately every fifth year, so those printers who started and then went out of business between the years that we surveyed, will not be listed. 

I am sure there will be several that we have missed.  One can see that the printing business is pretty risky because of the short time that most companies were in business!



PRINTERS                                                    NOTES  (Numbers appearing in parenthesis are the years                                                                                                                              in City Directories between 1871 and 2000)



A & M Enterprises                                           (1975)

A Quick Print Service                                       (1975)

Accent Printing Co.                                          (1999) John G. Graham

Acme Printing and Lithographing Co.                (1930-present) James W. Keef

Adams Printing and Lithographing                     (1945-present)

Advantage Printing Co.                                     (1995-present)

Aladdin Printing and Copying                            (1999-present) Ginger Weeks

Alley Print Shop, Inc.                                        (1985)

Allied Drug Products                                        (1945-50)

Allstate Printing Co.                                          (1975)

Ambrose Printing Co.                                       (1930)

American Printing Press                                    (1975)

American Printing Co.                                       (1990-present)

Ampersand Graphics                                        (1980)

Andrews Printing Co.                                       (1920-65)

Angel Printing Co.                                            (1920-present) Herb Stoloff

Arcade Printing Co.                                          (1905-present) Campbell Family

Argus Publishing Co.                                        (1890)

Art Printing Co.                                                (1955-present) Charles E. Miller

Asa Printing Co.                                               (1915-25)

Associated Litho                                               (1990)

Auto Print Shop                                                (1995-present) Anita W. Germann


B & L Printing Co.                                           (1985-present) Bobby J. Brooks

Barnes Printing Co.                                           (1990)

Bakers, C.W.  Printing Co.                               (1871)

Barber Printing Co.                                           (1930-45) 1023 Carter St., George W.

Bee Line Printing                                              (1990-1999) Up to three locations

Bestway Printing Co.                                        (1990-present)

Big Red Q QuickPrint                                       (1980)

Black, J.C. Printing and Publishing Co.              (1925)

Bowers, C.J.  Agency                                       (1960)

Brackett’s Printing Services                              (1985-1990)

Bradt Printing Co.                                             (1885-1900) George M. Bradt

Brauff, G.V. Printing Co.                                  (1910)

Brainerd Printing Co.                                        (1930)

Brainerd Printing Co.                                        (1955)

Brandon Printing Co.                                        (1920-25) Office: Nashville and Chattanooga

Brock Printing Co.                                            (1995) Robert A. Brock

Bryant Printing Co.                                           (1950-80) Black Owner

Bundschu Enterprises                                        (1990)


C & H Printing and Lithographing Co.               (1970)

C & S Color Press                                           (1985)

Capsular Products Inc.                                     (1985)

Cargile Printing Co.                                          (1936-45)

Carter Belfield Co.                                           (1945)

Case Printing Co.                                             (1980-1995) Robert L. Case

Chattanooga Composing and Printing                (1944-49) Chas. Bookout (Bob’s Dad)

Chattanooga Daily Times                                  (1880) Adolph S. Ochs

Chattanooga News Publishing Co.                    (1890) 

Chattanooga News Free Press                          (       -present)6

Chattanooga Printing and Engraving Co.            (1905-present)

Chattanooga Republican                                   (1890)

Chattanooga Times                                           (1900-present)

Checks Inc.                                                      (1995-present) Billy O. Wiggins, Sr.

Choo-Choo Printing and Advertising                 (1990-present)

Christian Printing Co.                                        (1990)

Circular Letter Advertising Co.                         (1930-65)

Cole Printing Co.                                              (1940)

College Press                                                   (1916-present)4

Combs Printing Co.                                          (1990)

Commercial Stationery and Supply                    (1950-65)

Commercial Printing Co.                                   (1876)  P.C. Wilson

Community Press Co.                                       (1920)

Complete Printing Co.                                      (1999) V. Murry

Connelly and Fais                                             (1895)

Cooley Enterprise                                             (1980)

Copy-Cat Printers                                            (1975)

Costello Printing Co.                                         (1930-60)

Craftsman Printers Inc.                                     (1980-85)

Crandall and Company                                     (1880)

Crandall and Morrison                                      (1885)

Crandall, W.I. Printers                                     (1890-95)

Crawford Printing Co.                                      (1950)

Crescent Printing Co.                                        (1900)

Crescent Printing Co.                                        (1980-1990)

Crockett & Law Enterprises Inc.                      (1980)

Crown Graphics                                               (1995-present)

Crystal Color Graphics                                     (1980)

Custom Printing Co.                                         (1960)


Daugherty & Associates                                   (1985-90) Two locations

Dearing Printing Co.                                         (1915-75)

Dearing-Smith Printing Co.                               (1936-40)

De Shano Printing and Publishing Co.                (1990-95) Joyce D. Holt

Diversified Printing Co.                                     (1990-present) Hal Chatfield

Dixie Print Shop                                               (1945-75)

Douglas’s Printing Co.                                      (1985-90)

Drummer Printing Co.                                       (1910-75)


Eagle Printing Co.                                             (1930)

East Ridge Printing Co.                                     (1985-present) W. Paul Stevens

East Side Printing Co.                                       (1925-30)

Eclectic Gem Publishing Co.                             (1890-1900)

Enloe Printing Co.                                             (1910)

Enterprise Printing Co.                                      (1925)

Envelope and Printing Co.                                 (1965)

Erma’s Print Shop                                            (1945) Black Owner


Fairview Printing Co.                                        (1965)

Fields, Harry L. Printing Co.                             (1940-50) (Target)

Fisher Printing Co.                                            (1930-60) J.M. Fisher

Ford Negatives and Printing Co.                       (1985-1990)

Four-Star Printing Co.                                      (1999) Jerry L. Forester, Sr.

Fox Printing Co.                                               (1915-30)

Franklin’s Printing Co.                                      (1999)

Fundamental Design                                          (1995) Ronald Kuhn Geni


G E M Printing Co                                            (1990)

Galyon Printing Co.                                          (1930-36)

Gang Printing Co.                                             (1955-75)3

Garner’s Printing Co.                                        (1936)

Goliath Printing Co.                                          (1980-1985) Mark M. Hixson

Graphic Impressions Inc.                                  (1980-present)

Graphic Printing                                                (1985)

Graphic Services                                              (1980)

Graphic Unlimited                                             (1980)

Griscom and Company                                     (1880)

Griscom and Gamble                                        (1876)

Griscom, Will S. and Company                         (1885)

Groner Printing Co.                                          (1900-75) G.D. Groner

Grover Printing Co.                                          (1965)


H & H Printing Co.                                           (1995) W. Hal Hodges

Haley Printing Co.                                            (1900)

Hamilton Alexander Press                                 (1950-55)

Hamilton Printing Co.                                        (1905-30)

Harry’s Printing Service                                    (1985)

Heiner Printing Co.                                           (1925-65)

Highland Park Printers                                      (1985)

Hillmer Printing Co.                                          (1955)

Horse Shoe Printing Co.                                   (1890)

Howell’s Pat Printing Co.                                  (1990)

Hudson, George C. Printing Co.                       (1945-55)

Hudson Printing and Lithographing                    (1950-80)

Hughes, Tom Printing Co.                                 (1955)


Imperial Printing Co.                                         (1910-15)

Ink Spot Printing Co.                                        (1995)

Inkworks                                                          (1999) Robert A. Brock

Instant Printing Co.                                           (1970)

Interchecks Inc.                                                (1985-90)

Intertype Composing Co.                                  (1915-80)


J Z Printing Co.                                                            (1999) Jim and Zona Brown

J & D Service                                                   (1990)

James Printing Co.                                            (1985)

Jarnagin, T.P. Printing Co.                                (1905)

JIMCO Printing Service                                    (1970-75)

Jones Colourworks                                           (1999-present) Kent Williams

Jones, D.M. Printing Co.                                  (1900)1

Jones, Tom Printing Co.                                    (1950-55)

Jones Printing and Lithographing Co.                 (1960-present)5


Keystone Printing Co.                                       (1915-40)

Kimball Engraving and Printing Co.                   (1960-80)

Kennedy Printing Co.                                       (1910)

Kirby and Gamble Printers                                (1871)

Kopi-King Instant Printing Center                     (1975-80)

Kopy-King Inc.                                                (1980-90) Three locations


Lancer Printing, Inc.                                          (1980)

Landmark Web Printing                                    (1990-present) Rob Woodfin

Laub Letter and Copy Service                          (1970)

Letus Printing Co.                                             (1995-present)

Ling’s Printery                                                  (1925)

Ling Printing Co.                                               (1930-45)

Ling-Faidley Printing Co.                                  (1950-90) Putmans

Little Brown Print Shop                                                (1990-present) Virgil Brown

Lombardo & Associates                                   (1999)

Long Printing Co.                                             (1936-40)

Louis Linotyping Co.                                        (1915)


MacGowan and Cooke Printers                        (1890-1915)

MacGowan, F.G.  Printers                                (1885)

Master Graphics                                               (1995) Mike McMasters

Mayfield Holman Printing Co.                           (1970)

Messenger Printing Co.                                     (1930)

Metro Printing Co.                                            (1990)

Micro-Scent Incorporated                                (1990-95)

Mid-Town Printing Co.                                     (1965-70)

Miller Printing Co.                                            (1965-70)

Miller, F.A. Printing Co.                                   (1905-15)

Moccasin Printing Co.                                      (1950-85)

Morgan Printing Co.                                         (1905-30)

Mountain Top Printing Co.                                (1999) Arthur D. Cogburn

Murray Printing Co.                                          (1960-75)


N C R Enterprises                                            (1990-95)

National Book Co.                                           (1920)

National Print Group                                         (1999) Casey Scott

National Printing Co.                                        (1920)

National Printing Co.                                        (1950)

National Printing Co.                                        (1975-present) T. Burton Gaston

Nave Printing Co.                                             (1915)

Night Owl, The                                                 (1985)

Northgate Printing Co.                                      (1975-85)

North Georgia Printing Co.                               (1965-present) James E. Sisk

Northside Printing Co.                                      (1930-36)

Norwood and Rodgers Printers                                    (1890)


O’Neal Publishing Co.                                      (1965-90)

Orchard Knob Printing Co.                               (1936)

Orrell Printing Co.                                            (1930-60)


P I P Printing Co.                                             (1990)

Pafford’s Printing Agency                                 (1970-75)

Pahmeyer, L.W.                                               (1930)

Palisades Printing and Design                            (1999) Al Brannon

Paragon Press                                                  (1985)

Paramount Press                                               (1945)

Paramount Services                                          (1985)

Patten and Payne Printers                                 (1876)

Payne, T.H. Printing Co.                                   (1990-95)

Pearson Printing Co.                                         (1995-present) Ted Pearson

Pennebaker, O.F.                                             1905)

Pennebaker-Turley                                           (1915-70)

PermaPrint Co.                                                 (1950-55)

Personally yours and National Services             (1985-90)

Phoenix Printing Co.                                         (1999) Fred V. Cerutti III

Pioneer Press                                                   (1970-85) Herman and Gary Garigus

Postal Instant Press                                           (1985)

Preferred Printing Co.                                       (1990-95) Katrina H. Grady

Press Publishing Co.                                         (1895-1905)

Printed Image                                                   (1995-present)

Printer, The                                                      (1975-present)

Printing Galore                                                  (1985)

Printing Solutions                                              (1999)

Print Media Service                                          (1990)

Print Plus                                                          (1999) David Robinson

Print Shop, The                                                            (1980-present) Jim Pierce

Print Source                                                     (1999) Scott Kennedy

Printworks Inc.                                                 (1995)

Prizma Printing                                                  (1995) F. Casper Cox

Proforma Crescent                                           (1995) Tom R. Martin

Progressive Imagine                                          (1995-present) Jim Davis

Pronto Print                                                      (1980-85)

Purse Co.                                                         (1900-45)

Pyramid Printing Co.                                         (1936)


Quick Print                                                       (1980-present) Two to Four Locations


Real Estate and Land Register                           (1871)

Reynolds and Hickman Printers                         (1890)

Rhyne Packaging Inc.                                       (1999)

Riverbend Typography and Publishing Co.        (1985) 

Roberts - Mingle Printing Co.                           (1910-15)

Robinson Printing Co.                                       (1960-70)

Ross Printing Shop                                           (1950)

Rosscraft Printing Co.                                       (1970-80)

Rossville Letter Shop                                        (1955)

Routh’s Printing Service                                    (1936-45)


Service Printing Co.                                          (1930-95)

Scenicland Printing Co.                                     (1970-present)

Scenic Land Spotlight                                       (1995-present) Lora Basham

Sherrill Printing Co.                                           (1910-15)

Signal Printing Co.                                            (1930-36)

Smith Printing Co.                                             (1900-36) S.M. Smith

Some Day Press                                               (1995) Valera Gibson

Southern Printing Co.                                        (1920)

Southern Printing and Graphics                         (1999)

Specialty Printers                                              (1960-90) Labels by Ling-Faidly

Spectra Inc.                                                      (1995-present) Bill Webb

Splendid Printing Co. Inc.                                 (1995-present) Harold F. Brown, Jr.

Spurling Printing and Office Supply                   (1936-70) Geo. D. Spurling

Spurling - Weiser Printing Co.                           (1930)

Standard Printing Co.                                       (1920-36)

Star Box and Printing Co.                                 (1915-present)

Starkey Printing Co.                                         (1934-present)2

Student Printing Co.                                          (1890) U.S. Grant University


Target Printing and Engraving                            (1930-36)

Target Printing and Lithographing Co.               (1936-present)

Target Supply and Printing Co.                         (1920-25)

Textile Printing Co.                                           (1925-present)

Thompson Printing Co.                                     (1905-36)

Times Daily and Weekly                                   (1871)

Times Printing Co.                                            (1885 - present)

Tri County Printing and Lithographing                (1980-95)

Tri State Printers                                               (1990)

Trundle Brothers Engraving                               Not usually listed under printers

Twin Printing Co.                                              (1995-present) Steve Eldridge



Valley Printing Co.                                            (1950-60)

Valley Wide Printing                                         (1995)

Van’s Printery                                                  (1925)

Van Noy P.E.A.                                               (1900)

Village Print Shoppe                                         (1985-present) Monte Rhinehart

Vincent printing Co.                                          (1985-present) Screen Printers

Vorshall Enterprises, Inc.                                  (1999)


Walker Transfers of Tennessee                         (1945-70)

Wallace Printing Co.                                         (1950-85)

Wallace-Routh Printing Co.                              (1945)

Webco Graphics Inc.                                        (1995-present)

Wheeler Printing Co.                                        (1999) Kevin J. Wheeler

While-U-Wait Printing Co.                               (1975)

Williams Printing Co.                                        (1925-50)

Williams Printing Co.                                        (1970-present) Levi Williams and Sons

Wilson Printing Co.                                           (1936-95) W.R. Wilson

Windham, C.H. Printing Co.                             (1915-36)

Womble Printing Co.                                        (1985-95)


Xyan Inc.                                                         (1999) Todd Oaks





1- D.M. Jones Printing Co., Inc.; 818 Georgia Avenue; Incorporated June 1, 1899; Capital $1500.00; D.M. Jones, President; D. George Morgan, Secretary - Treasurer


2- Starkey Printing Co.  Founded 1934 by William Gilman of Gilman Paint and W.C. Starkey.  Presidents: W.C. Starkey (1934-1982), Glenn Starkey (1982-1984), Frances Starkey (1984-1985), Garnett McMillan (1985-1990), JWHenson (1990-1992), William Case (1993-present). Starkey suffered a very serious fire on July 25, 1962, but came back stronger than ever.


3-Gang Printing Co.  Owners: Brother-in-laws, Mark Gang and Herman Garrigus.


4- College Press:  An area printer not in the City of Chattanooga.


State of Tennessee vs. Southern Junior College,

Chattanooga Chancery Court 1933 - Case #25252


5- Henry McKinney and Wendell Burns bought the Tom Jones Printing Co.


6- I have heard it said that the Chattanooga Free-Press got its start from a little paper published by the Home Stores, an early chain of grocery stores here in Chattanooga.  Later it developed into a daily paper and then bought the Chattanooga News and became the Chattanooga News Free-Press.  In time it was sold from the McDonald Family, bought the Chattanooga Times and became the Chattanooga Times Free-Press, Chattanooga's only newspaper.




by: Heiner Printing Company



This is the last of a four volume pictorial history of Chattanooga.  It was Organized, Edited and Printed by Mr. Paul A. Heiner of the Heiner Printing Company in 1964.  He placed each page in a separate box with layout, copy and photos.  Heiner hired H. Bob Bookout to do the halftones in the book in evenings after he finished his regular shift at Arcade Printing.  Heiner’s camera was an old Robertson 17 with a vacuum back.  The lights on the camera were incandescent and the halftones were shot through a magenta screen.  With the poor condition of some of the original pictures and the handicap of the camera et al, the quality of the photographs as printed in the book are wholly due to the fine craftsmanship of Mr. Bookout a second generation printer.  He was the finest printing craftsmen in this area for many years.  Volume One was published in 1951, Volume Two in 1956, and Volume Three in 1961.  Copies of all four books are available for inspection at the Chattanooga Bicentennial Library.

Printing Unions in Chattanooga



Chattanooga, TN

August 29, 2002

From an interview with Jim Bell


1.     How many Union Shops were operating in Chattanooga at the height of Union activity?

                                                Ans: Eleven


2.     What requirements did the owner of a printing company have to meet in order that his company could be classified as a Union Shop and receive the Union Label?


                                                Ans: There had to be at least one Union Typositor and one  Union Pressman


3.     What organization did, “Allied Printing Trades Council” refer to?  This Council was mentioned on the Union Label.


                                                Ans: It referred to a union shop where there was at least one member of the Typositor’s Union and one of the Pressman’s Union. Then they could have the Union Label.


4.     What was the approximate number of Union members in the Chattanooga  Printing Pressmen’s Union at the height of union activity?


                                                Ans: 145


5.     Did the Chattanooga Local of the Printing Pressmen include any out of town members such as Dalton, etc.?


                                                Ans: For awhile Dalton pressmen were in the Chattanooga Union but later they dropped out.


6.     Was there much competition between the Printing Pressmen’s Union and the International Typographical Union in attracting new members after offset printing became so popular?


                                                Ans: When offest lithography came in there was a lot of competition between the Typositor’s Union and the Pressman’s Union.  Finally the Pressman’s Union  covered the cameramen, strippers and platemakers.


7.     What organization was responsible for publishing and printing the “Labor World”?


                                                Ans: Jim did not know.  There was a Labor World organization who prepared the paper with about five employees in                                                                                                                               Chattanooga.  It was printed in Chattanooga.


8.     Is the “Labor World” still published?  If not, when did publication cease?


                                                Ans: Jim does not know if it is still alive or not.  He said that he has not gotten one in more than 15 years.


9.     In your opinion, what were the primary reasons for the demise of both the Local Union and the International Union of Printing Pressmen?


                                                Ans: “It is a mystery what happened.  We had a good thing going.  The Free-Press strike played a large part.”, Jim said.


10.   What happened to the assets of the Local Pressman’s Union?


                                                Ans: They still belong to the union.  The union is still active in Chattanooga, but the Typositor’s Union is all gone.


11.   What happened to the assets of the International Union, such as the Pressmen’s Home and School?


                                                Ans: The buildings and grounds were sold.


12.   Are any retired members of the Local Pressmen’s Union still drawing pensions from the International Retirement Fund or were these benefits lost?


                                        Ans: Local members are still drawing.  I get $300.00 a month.


13.   When did the Local and the International Printing Pressmen cease to exist?  Did this happen simultaneously?


                                                Ans: See answer under question 10 above.


14.   Does the International Typographical Union still exist?


                                                Ans: See answer under question 10 above.


15.  Most local unions are refereed to by a number.  What was the number of the Pressman’s Local?


                                                Ans: No. 165


       16.  What are the prospects for the local Pressman’s Union?


                                                Ans: Dim


       17.  For how many years were you president of the local Pressman’s Union?


                                                Ans: 16


The Union Bug




Above is the Union Label, called the Union Bug, for the Allied Printing Trades Council.  The number to the right indicates the Printing Company that has the right to use this bug.  Number 11 belonged to the Heiner Printing Co. in Chattanooga.  Some unscrupulous printers got themselves into legal trouble by using the Union Bug when they did not belong to the union.  Printing customers whose companies had strong union affiliation, or politicians have been known to ask non-union printers to put the bug on their jobs so they could do business with them.  The “bug” pictured above was scanned in at 6Xs the size that it appeared on printed material.  Union Printers did not always put the “bug” on all of their work, mostly where it was expedient to do so.   There was no requirement that they have it on everything.


A Printer’s Comments


It is a foregone conclusion that there were an abundance of print shops in the Chattanooga area between the years 1871 and 2000.  Some lasted a very short time and others prospered for many years.  In the earlier years, it was very easy to purchase a small hand fed platen press, some hand set type, printer’s ink, a few reams of paper and begin selling to any customers that you might find in the city.  You had a relatively small investment and the loss was not very great if you later decided to close out the business.  It seems that print shops were early casualties whenever there was an economic downturn.


Letterpress Printing was the primary method of printing until after World War II. In this method of printing the movable type was inked and the ink was transferred by contact with the paper under pressure.  After the war several major corporations such as 3M, DuPont, Eastman Kodak, and others began allocating funds for developing new products in the printing industry.  Their efforts were quite successful and Offset Printing rapidly replaced Letterpress Printing as the primary method.  In Offset Printing a metal plate is prepared then ink and water are placed on the plate and the image is transferred under pressure to a rubber blanket and then transferred from the rubber blanket to the paper.  During this time some printers did not adapt and ceased to exist.  Today, the investment in a modern print shop is quite high.


Let’s not forget the many employees throughout these years who depended upon the printing industry for their livelihood.  Printing employees have always been a group proud of their skills and have had to work hard under sometimes difficult conditions.  In addition, it was necessary to learn new skills as the industry changed.   I remember one employee who operated a letterpress cylinder press and regularly printed a monthly magazine.  He worked hard and tried to produce the very best quality.  While printing one issue, he and another employee carried a four page form of type to the press and placed it on the bed of the press.  The employee forgot to lock the form on the press.  When he started the press, the press made one complete revolution and launched the form off the bed of the press and deposited the form against the wall behind the press.  Needless to say, the form was completely destroyed and many hours were required to set all that type over again.  You could easily see the tears streaming down the cheeks of that employee.  Today, electronics have made a significant impact upon the printing industry.  Fewer employees are required, but they must have even higher skills.   



This article was found in the personal effects of the printer

Frank Ryon after his death in 1951.




Exit Laughing


I have two brothers.  One brother is a printer, the other was just sentenced to death in the electric chair for murder.  My mother died from insanity when I was three years old.  My two sisters are prostitutes and my father sells narcotics.  Recently I met a girl who was just released from a reformatory where she served time for smothering her illegitimate child to death and I want to marry her.  My problem is, if I marry this girl should I tell her about my brother who is the PRINTER?

Submitted by John W. Henson III