Cornell University Press

Cornell University Press
Cornell University Press
Parent company Cornell University
Founded 1869
Country of origin United States
Headquarters location Ithaca, New York
Publication types Books
Official website

The Cornell University Press, established in 1869 but inactive from 1884 to 1930, was the first university publishing enterprise in the United States.[1][2]A division of Cornell University, it is housed in Sage House, the former residence of Henry William Sage.

The press was established in the College of the Mechanic Arts (as mechanical engineering was called in the 19th century) because engineers knew more about running steam-powered printing presses than literature professors.[3] Since its inception,[1] the press has offered work-study financial aid: students with previous training in the printing trades were paid for typesetting and running the presses that printed textbooks, pamphlets, a weekly student journal, and official university publications.[4]

Today, the press is one of the country's largest university presses.[5] It produces approximately 150 nonfiction titles each year in various disciplines, including anthropology, Asian studies, biological sciences, classics, history, industrial relations, literary criticism and theory, natural history, philosophy, politics and international relations, veterinary science, and women's studies.[2][6] Although the press has been subsidized by the university for most of its history, it is now largely dependent on book sales to finance its operations.[7]

In 2010, the Mellon Foundation, whose President Don Michael Randel is a former Cornell Provost, awarded to the press a $50,000 grant to explore new business models for publishing scholarly works in low-demand humanities subject areas. With this grant, the press, the Cornell University Library, and the German Studies department collaborated to publish a book series in German Studies called "Signale: Modern German Letters, Cultures, and Thoughts." Only 500 hard copies of each book in the series will be printed, with extra copies manufactured on demand once the original supply is depleted.[7]


  1. ^ a b Bishop, Morris (1962). A History of Cornell. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. p. 127. ISBN 978-0801400360. 
  2. ^ a b "The History of the Cornell University Press". Cornell University Press. Retrieved 2006-01-01. 
  3. ^ Bishop, Morris (1962). A History of Cornell. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. p. 96. ISBN 978-0801400360. 
  4. ^ Bishop, Morris (1962). A History of Cornell. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. pp. 175–76. ISBN 978-0801400360. 
  5. ^ "2009–10 Factbook" (PDF). Cornell University. Retrieved 2009-12-27. 
  6. ^ "Cornell University Press: Information for Authors". Cornell University Press. Retrieved 2006-06-06. 
  7. ^ a b Lam, Jackie (September 21, 2010). "In a Tough Market, University Press Aims to Streamline Production". Cornell Daily Sun. Retrieved 2010-09-22. 

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