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1948 - Copenhagen I - The Founding Fathers of the League

Published on 07 Aug. 2017

In 1948 the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers was officially founded at the Conference in Copenhagen from 1st to 5th September. Plans were made, decisions were taken by the presidents of the ten national associations who became ILABs founding fathers. They also elected the first ILAB Committee: William S. Kundig, Percy H. Muir, Einar Gronholt Pedersen, Menno Hertzberger and André Poursin. As early as 3rd September their work began with the first ever ILAB Committee Meeting.

Chairman: Mr. W. S. Kundig

M. KUNDIG. This is an historic moment, we are beginning to work for the International League. We start with nothing: everything is to be done. We shall have to raise money and we shall have to work. First we shall need stationery. I will have it printed in Geneva and it will be sent to all officers. The name of the League will be printed in English and French: on the left will be the names of the Associations and on the right the names and addresses of the officers.

M. HERTZBERGER. Can we not have some kind of badge or emblem for the League?

M. KUNDIG. Some of us have two badges already. I have the Swiss and the British: but by all means let us have an international emblem. What do you suggest? There could be the initials of the League as a sort of monogram. They will be the same in English and French. Anything more?

Mr.  MUIR. Perhaps something to show that we are international – the dove of peace, or something like it.

M. KUNDIG. Yes, the dove of peace, and something to show that we have to do with books. Who knows an artist who will prepare this?

Mr. MUIR. I propose Mr. Reynolds Stone.

M. KUNDIG. I am sure we would gladly entrust Mr. Muir with the task of obtaining designs for our approval.
The next thing is to draw up a budget. For the first three months the Swiss will advance the funds. This will enable us to judge better what is required. On the basis of what is spent in three months we could calculate the probable expenditure for one year.

M. HERTZBERGER. Could we not make an approximate budget now for the first year? When we had got some rough idea, we could divide the sum by the total membership of all the Associations put together and thus we should be able to tell our members how much a head they would have to subscribe to the League.

Mr. MUIR. I submit that there is a misunderstanding here. That is not the basis on which contributions are to be reckoned. Each Association will pay an equal share of the expenses; but the British and French will pay double.

M. HERTZBERGER. But that would mean that it would cost each Dutch member much more than each British or French member.
Mr. KUNDIG. Nevertheless that was the principle agreed by the Conference at large and we cannot depart from it.

The Committee then went into a discussion of ways and means, and passed the following resolutions:

1. That the finances of the League will be met by the members of the League for the first year (subject to review after three months) as follows (Swiss Francs):











against which, for the first three months, Switzerland will advance a sum of money to cover the working expenses.

2. That Mr. P. H. Muir and Mr. A. Poursin will undertake the work for the publication of a Year Book.

3. That a letter be drafted to be sent to all Government and other departments in each country advising them of he formation of the League and where possible to have the League registered.

4. That Statutes and Rules be legally prepared for the next meeting of the Executive Committee.

5. That the next general Conference be held in England around the first week of September, 1949.

6. That arrangements be made for the exchange of children of members of the League for holidays, the organisation of these arrangements to be undertaken by Miss W. Myers.

7. That a badge or emblem be prepared for the International League, designs for which will be submitted by Mr. Muir at the next meeting of the Executive Committee.

8. That the next meeting of the Executive Committee shall be held in Geneva, Switzerland, during November 1948.

9. That Mr. Hertzberger shall undertake the work of a dictionary of trade terms.

10. That the Executive Committee shall offer itself as a Committee of Arbitration.

11. That the Minutes of the General Conference held in Copenhagen in September, 1948, shall be printed in Switzerland and the cost apportioned according to the number of copies required by each association.

Third ILAB Committee Meeting, Oslo 1951
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