Massachusetts Militia. Mr. [blank] You Being a Training Soldier in the Company of Militia. Boston, 1758.
Until the 19th century when printers began to specialize in certain types of work, a print shop would typically produce anything from newspapers to bibles. But a more immediate source of income was commercial printing of what Franklin called “little jobs” – letterheads, labels, circulars, and much else that we call ephemera. This included blank forms, often legal documents that required the precision and consistency afforded by printing. When possible, “little jobs” could be completed more economically by printing many copies on a single sheet. This only worked if the printer had sufficient type to set the entire form, as, naturally, the same letters would be used repeatedly. In this sheet of blanks, it appears that the printer ran short of the chosen font of uppercase ‘y’ and had to substitute a larger font of the letter, a discrepancy easily seen on an intact form, but one that would likely go undetected when these notices were separated.