During World War II NAPA's active printers were scattered
throughout the world. Fortunately, older members came from the
shadows of inactivity to carry on. Timothy B. Thrift, revered for
and Ernest A. Edkins, one of the hobby's greatest critics, teamed
a title carefully selected from more than fifty possibilities.
Thrift and Edkins embarked on what was to be a five-year project
of great pieces from amateur journals of yesteryears, together
with the best of current writing and comment. Edkins' pen never
flowed more fluently while Thrift handset seventeen galleys of
type for each 24-page issue. The quarterly appeared regularly
until Edkins became ill. Thrift declared "30" to the enterprise
in 1945 after twelve issues.
While the Thrift-Edkins "symposium" reprinted famous pieces of the
"halcyon days," it also featured personality sketches on Burton
Crane, Edward H. Cole, Warren J. Brodie, Paul W. Cook and Edwin B.
Hill. Thrift allowed Edkins the bulk of their editorial space and
he played it to the hilt. Reviews were scholarly, thorough and
never without wit. They were written with the talent and skill of
a craftsman and Thrift presented them with the dignity and finesse
of a master printer. Never in the National's history was there
ever a more perfect wedding of talent.
The arrival of an issue of
must have been a compelling hour or more of required reading.
Behind the Ionic columns on the cover, bordering the "abode of the
Muses," were double-columned 6x9 pages, beautiful to behold in