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Archives and collection

We have a wonderful collection — over 400 cases of lead and the wooden type and three working printing presses: a 1920s Arab Clamshell jobbing press, a 1953 Original Heidelberg, and an 1880s Wharfedale Reliance cylinder press, as well as two Falcon presses. We also have print orders, invoices, cash books, ledgers, printed records, newspapers, printers’ proofs, and original photographs stretching all the way back to the 1850s when Robert Smail moved to Innerleithen to sell boots, books and stationery.

A visit to Smail’s provides a unique insight into life, work and play in a Victorian Scottish boomtown.