A New Year’s Greeting from Merrymount Press, 1918

By Anna J. Clutterbuck-Cook, Reader Services


Welcome to the future! In this first week of the new year, I bring you a New Year’s greeting from one hundred years in the past. This illustration by Rudolph Ruzicka (1883-1978) graced the annual greeting to the friends of Merrymount Press, Boston at the dawn of the year 1918. The image is a view of the parade ground at Camp Devens (Ayer, Mass.) and the Latin text at the top of the image is the official motto of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, “Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem,” translated into English as “she seeks with the sword a quiet peace under liberty” — a solemn message for the advent of a year under the shadow of World War One.

The Massachusetts Historical Society holds a collection of illustrations by Ruzicka, himself a member of the Society for many years, as well as many titles printed by Merrymount Press. You are welcome to explore our print holdings through our online catalog ABIGAIL and reach out to the library staff with any questions you have about accessing items in our collection.

We look forward to welcoming you to the library in 2018 and beyond!