Fermin Rocker looks at life with Rudolf and Milly Rocker
Years back I had the opportunity to meet Rudolf Rocker’s son Fermin while I was visiting Valerio Isca at his apartment in New York City. During our visit, I learned that Fermin had written a manuscript about life with his parents in England in the early 20th century. As I listened to him spin his tale, I became intrigued with his story and suggested he consider having it published. He didn’t seem impressed with my suggestion and when we parted I came away thinking his manuscript would remain buried in his desk. A few days later I contacted Valerio to tell him I was very interested in typesetting and printing Fermin’s book and asked him to intercede for me. It took several letters between Valerio and Fermin before Fermin agreed to my proposal and said that I could have exclusive rights to publish the book in the United States.
I was thrilled.
Then began the long process of typesetting the book on my Linotype machine, sending galley proofs to London and waiting for them to be returned. With everything finally corrected, the actual printing began. During those many months of typesetting and proof reading, we discussed what title we should give the book. In the end, we finally agreed that since most of Fermin’s accounts of the fascinating people who entered the Rocker family life took place at their home at 33 Dunstan Houses, that address would become the book’s title. In addition to the manuscript, Fermin, a noted artist, also provided sketches for the book to illustrate various stories. With the typesetting and printing completed, I turned to hand binding the hard cover book. and was finally able to offer it to American readers. The book makes a wonderful companion to another book, one Rudolf Rocker had written many years earlier, Nationalism and Culture–a book which I had republished in the 1970s. Both books are prized parts of the collection of books I have published over the years.
Until later . . .