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LITHOGRAPHY
The printing process

A few dealers advertise the crate labels they sell as STONE lithos. When, in fact, the labels they are selling are not old enough to be stone litho's. The stone litho process was totally extinct by the late 1920's. The following information may help you have some idea of the printing processes used and the approximate dates they were used.

STONE LITHOGRAPHY:
Paper pressed against the inked surface of the stone.
Stone plates were used from the 1880's until the 1920's.

METAL PLATE LITHOGRAPHY:
Paper pressed against the inked surface of a zinc or aluminum plate.
Zinc or aluminum plates were introduced as a substitute for stone about 1900 and gradually replaced stones over the next 25 years.

OFFSET LITHOGRAPHY:
Image transferred to an intermediate offset roller. Paper fed between rollers
Photo-offset lithography began to be used in the late 1920's rapidly becoming the dominant production process. This basic process is still used in printing today.

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