To celebrate the 250th anniversary of John Murray publishers, The Story of Books has a new exhibition, 250 Years of John Murray opening in Hay-on-Wye in 2019*. This gallery-style exhibition features stunning photographs of books in the John Murray Archive, and the story is told through extracts from a new anthology of letters from John Murray authors to their publisher.
The publishing house of John Murray was founded in Fleet Street in 1768 and remained a family firm over seven generations. It was the oldest independent book publisher in the world until it was sold in 2002, and was the last of London’s “gentlemen publishing houses”.
Dear Mr Murray is a new collection of some of the best letters from the hundreds of thousands held in the John Murray Archive. They reveal not only the story of some of the most interesting and influential books in history, but also the remarkable friendships – as well as occasional animosities – between author and publisher, as well as readers, editors, printers and illustrators.
At The Story of Books, 20 Castle Street, Hay-on-Wye, HR3 5DF we will tell the story of 250 Years of John Murray, and launch our new programme of events in 2019 ‘Four o’Clock Friends‘, inspired by John Murray II’s gatherings with writers at his home at 50 Albemarle Street in London.
*We were due to open this over the Hay Festival Winter Weekend but due to space constraints we have postponed this until 2019.