Delbert D. Tysdal

tysdal protrait
Living years: 1944-2013
Biography:

Delbert's interst in penmanship was aroused at the Dakota Business Institute in Fargo, North Dakota. Tysdal, born in 1945, later bacame one of the last pupils of W. C. Brownfield, who in turn was one of the last to study under Louis Madarasz in 1910.

Obituary:

----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 2:14 PM
Subject: Boston engrossers in 1920s

I just spent a morning at the Boston Public Library. I was researching the engrossers and penmen of the 1920s. The most prominent ads were for Frank B Davis and F W Martin. Each had studios on Boylston Street at 120 and 132. The Davis ad had wonderful engrossers' script. The Martin ad was under the heading of 'Penmanship Expert'. There were no headings for 'calligraphers' or 'engrossers' but the latter word was used within the ads for both persons.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Thursday, July 28, 2011 1:16 PM
Subject: Re: Best way to learn Spencerian?

I have looked at Madarasz and other's writing with a magnifying glass.
In a sentence of 5 words from left to right there may be as few as only 3 letters to a lift, paper slide, then 3 letters, paper slide, then 3 letters, etc. Lower case was meant to look like it was written fast but it was not, merely drawn almost. Harry L Darner in 1974 sent to me the LC alphabet by Madarasz and showed where he made the lifts. I was very, very surprised as I had been taught business penmanship which is not lift and move. Also the moving of the paper to the left will keep the slant of the letters uniform across.

RE: Frederick W Tamblyn. He had a correspondence course advertised in magazines like POPULAR MECHANICS. The user would pay $1 per lesson. Mr Tamblyn would send out a one sentence lesson, one at a time. The user would practice, send in the BEST attempt with another $. FWT would red line criticize the user's work and send lesson 2. He made a lot of money doing this.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Thursday, July 28, 2011 1:27 PM
Subject: LM and others, 2 styles of writing

Warner C Brownfield, the last personal student of L Madarasz (summer 1908), told me in 1967 that there were 2 styles of ornamental penmanship and business writing. He called the best styles pro-pen and pro-biz. That meant the writing was professional in style and character and not merely slapped out for correspondence use. E C Mills and J J Bailey were the best examples in pro-biz. Madarasz Zaner, Bloser were pro-pen. F W Tamblyn was more likely in the 'whip it out' group but he could do pro- pen if asked.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Friday, July 29, 2011 9:45 AM
Subject: Re: Best way to learn Spencerian?

Just think at $1 a lesson how busy FWT would have been. And wealthy also. 40,000 students at 52 letters each + 1-10 and that many lessons--my calculator does not go that high.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Friday, July 29, 2011 9:47 AM
Subject: Edward C Mills

Mr Mills also did lessons for $1 each. The person who writes the most like Mr Mills is now Bryan Platt of Louisville KY.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Friday, July 29, 2011 7:07 PM
Subject: Re: LM and others, 2 styles of writing

Madarasz wrote a style called 'running hand.' It was 1/8 inch tall at the most, tight and compact. 4-5 words to a line on 8 1/2 X 11. I am glad the see folks are interested in this old style of writing.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2011 8:39 AM
Subject: Re: Best way to learn Spencerian?

Spencer and his engraver: a lot of the work in the various Spencerian Compendium was done by his engraver, Archibald McLees. The engraver could add a lot to a Spencerian pen-designed form. I think one of P R Spencer's daughters married Mr McLees.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2011 8:49 AM
Subject: Time spent to learn OP

When I was taught penmanship, the first 9 months was spent on business penmanship. Daily drills in classes totally 1 3/4 hours a day for 9 months with nightly homework of about 1/2 hour. Then the teacher said I could learn OP and that has been another 40 years.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2011 8:57 AM
Subject: How penmanship was taught at Zanerian

There were two methods by which penmanship was taught at the Zanerian College. 

A. From photos of the 2nd or 3rd floor classroom I think the classes were taught with chalkboard demonstrations and explanation of letter forms. Perhaps as little as one letter per day. Three or four teachers would walk the room and comment on the students' practice letter forms. Often, the teacher would ask the student to stand and let the teacher sit down and demonstrate and comment, such as: more slant, here; taller here; more oval here; fast, not slower, etc etc. There were as many as 90 -100 students in the classes.

B. In the learning of OP there were not as many students. In these sessions (lasting 3-8 hours a day for the summer months) the teacher would be a an elevated desk in the center-side of the room. The student would be shown by the teacher how to write a particular letter form and then go back to his/her desk for practice. Then to the teacher to show the results with added comments. 

The two teachers that told me these methods attended Zanerian in the summer of 1922.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Thursday, August 04, 2011 9:44 AM
Subject: Zanerian classes

Zanerian held summer school classes. These were for 12 weeks ending in September just before school started in student's home towns. Summer in Columbus Ohio would have been hot. And no air conditioners on the 2nd and third floor of a brick building. And yet Mr Lupfer and other teachers wore a coat and tie. The more accomplished students were then hired to teach other students. For instance, H L Darner taught Willis A Baird how to write engrossers' script (copperplate now). And I had a chance in 1971 to take lessons from Mr Darner in Bradley Arkansas.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 12:46 PM
Subject: Tamblyn holders

These holders were made with inserts of various other woods, plastics, even ivory (Magnusson). Those parts were center drilled, glued and then pegged to fit on either side to the wood on either side. Then lathe or other turnings. Many were rather elaborate and yet light to the hand.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Thursday, August 18, 2011 12:29 PM
Subject: F Leon Tower Hackinsack (?) NJ made penholders

Mr Tower was alive when I was researching penmen in the early 1970s. He made several styles and sent me one made out of 1/2 inch diameter X 6 inch slightly bent tree branch. It was interesting but heavy to use. If anyone has old Business Educators his ads were in the back pages.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Friday, August 19, 2011 6:59 PM
Subject: Re: New file uploaded to Ornamental_Penmanship

I like the 'Br' in Brooklyn on the bottom left. Baird was taught by H L Darner in 1908 at Zanerian. In 1967 I had a chance to take personal lessons from Mr Darner in Bradley, Arkansas. I did not make it. 

----- Original Message ----- 
From: iampeth_penman 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Friday, August 19, 2011 5:53 PM
Subject: Re: New file uploaded to Ornamental_Penmanship

Phenomenal script! This is the copy used on page 17 of The Zanerian Manual. However, I just noticed that the '15' of 1915 is not reproduced in the manual! Thanks for posting Nick!

Joe Vitolo

> File : /Baird.jpg 
> Uploaded by : nickspenroom <nickspenroom@...> 
> Description : W A Baird 

> You can access this file at the URL:
> http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Ornamental_Penmanship/files/Baird.jpg 

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 22, 2011 6:34 PM
Subject: Re: Behrensmeyers Uncanny Penmanship

in 1893 F B Courtney and L Madarasz were teacher-employees of A N Palmer in the Cedar Rapids Business College of Iowa. Courtney wrote an envelope, let the ink dry and tossed it over to Madarasz saying to the effect "match this in a day's work'. Maddy wrote an envelope, let it dry and tossed in over to Courtney and said to the effect 'try to match this in a lifetime'. As told to me by Warner C Brownfield in 1967, Maddy's last personal student in 1908 in Knoxville TN.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 22, 2011 8:47 PM
Subject: Re: Studying Plain Business Penmanship

Do the 'movement exercises' in large size first. Perhaps 1 to 1 1/4 inches tall. Do ovals both ways, left to right and then right to left. Try to get hair lines as much as you can. It will take time to get those lines like hairs. After warm up, you can vary the size: large to small both directions, then small to large, both directions. Follow with ups and downs at 50 degree or so slant. Go over the ovals after they are dried and you can learn to tighten them up. Elbow off the desk about 1 inch or less as it gets in the way. Do not grab the pen, just hold it like you would toss a dart. Tamblyn's instructions are wonderful. I learned at Dakota Business College in Fargo ND in 1964. They had re produced Tamblyn's books under their own name, I found out later. You could get a Watkin's Method Penmanship book maybe from F Leland Watkins, 9 South 8th Street, Fargo, ND 58102. Ask him the price and mention my name affectionately. Good practice can be done with a ball point on newsprint and sideways. Best wishes.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, August 22, 2011 8:53 PM
Subject: John A Stryker of Fort Worth TX

This penman was also exceptional. He was a follower of the Madarasz' style as most were. He had a photo studio in Ft Worth in 1970 and he came through Fargo ND one day on a northern tier trip across USA. He spent his life in photography, not penmanship.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 7:46 AM
Subject: Re: New file uploaded to Ornamental_Penmanship F Leland Watkins

No one here in his home town knows who wrote that actual signature 'cut'.
He went to Zanerian in 1922 or so. Perhaps E A Lupfer did the actual pen work and sent for approval and the 'cut' was then sent. Z-B had a booklet called 'Signature Cuts' which showed various pen styles for display work, letterheads, signatures, broadsides, et al.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 7:47 AM
Subject: F Leland Watkins

I wrote a great story about him and his school. Do a Google search for F Leland Watkins, Dakota Business College, by Del Tysdal. It is a good read about old time business colleges, penmanship and life.

http://www.fargo-history.com/other-schools/dbc3.htm 

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 7:23 PM
Subject: Re: Studying Plain Business Penmanship

There were two categories of plain business penmanship. Warner C Brownfield told me in 1967 about pro biz and regular biz, even pro ornate and regular ornate. Regular was what everybody could do in some sort of readable handwriting. The pro style was the elevated to perfection style. Of the latter these penmen excelled: Edward C Mills Rochester NY, J J Bailey Ontario Canada, Paul O'Hara Norfolk VA, (Mike Sull's mentor) and Clinton C Canan. The first two could do some ornate pen but that was not their thing. Canan went both ways and died at age 31 or so. F W Tamblyn was kind of in the middle of both as well. In pro biz as in pro ornate there were 'lifts' at about every 3rd letter. You would need a magnifying glass to see the lifts but they are there. You can tell if you look for them with the naked eye even with printed work.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 5:52 AM
Subject: Re: Studying Plain Business Penmanship

Of course. I was trying to refer to plain business penmanship and A D Taylor was a pro at it. He died around 1898 and during his last 2 years he came to excel at it (as told to me by Lester Fields, a Chicago engrosser for 50 years, partner with Chester L Cook at Scroll Studio).

----- Original Message ----- 
From: Michael 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 8:09 PM
Subject: Re: Studying Plain Business Penmanship

Del, Would you put Taylor's work in the Pro Ornate category? There's some stuff I've seen that's just about flawless. Also, what about Bloser when he was "on"?

Mike Sacco

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 5:58 AM
Subject: Re: Studying Plain Business Penmanship

E W Bloser: in his last 7 or 8 years he had the 'shaking' disease. As told to me by Luella A Watkins a 1922 Zanerian. He would put a heavy ink well on his paper. Hold his chin in his left hand to keep it from shaking and do his writing. He died around 1929. He never drove a car. His wife drove him to and from work. They lived across the way from Goodale Park which is right across the street from the old Zanerian on Park Street. His daughter in 1994 told me that the night he died her mother had sent her to a movie with a friend. She recalled the movie but I have forgotten what it was. When she came home the coroner was in the house tending to the body.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: Del 
To: Ornamental_Penmanship@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 5:37 PM
Subject: George A Gaskell Manchester NH

This fellow went to school with P R Spencer Sr around 1857. He then taught penmanship itinerantly around the country. Somehow he was able to acquire a building in Manchester NH with little or no money down, just payments. He advertised avidly. Some of his students were L Madarasz, W E Dennis, E L Brown and Austin Norman Palmer. These fellows set the standards for a new style of non Spencerian writing. His school occupied the third floor of his building and he rented the other floors. He used photo lithograpy to print penmanship texts and supposedly made lots of money. In the 1970s I was able to get his obit and the write up about his death as it appeared in the Manchester newspaper. He was 42 or 43 when they found him 'dead and drunk' in a shallow pond near his school.
He supposedly was going back to his school and did not make it. He was not married.

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