From: Dave Spooner
To: Class of 1968

Welcome to “68 Prints”, a project conceived in early 2020, but which hearkens back many decades, to shortly after the Class of 1968 received their first half stripes or silver bars. Back then, Hugh Kilmartin’s wife Susan, created a beautiful copper plate print as a memento of our days at the Academy. At that time, she printed just 25 of them, giving them as gifts for their closest friends. Recently she has granted me permission to offer them for sale to the rest of the class.

My vision is to use this sale as a means to raise money for a military charity. To get things going I contracted a talented Seattle printmaker, an artist in her own right, to reproduce these from Susan’s original plate. The image measures 8 by 11 inches and will create a rich addition to your decor when you have it appropriately matted and framed. The one you see here has hung in our home for over fifty years. Beside it are the current offerings.

Framed Original

Somerset Cream

(click to enlarge images)

Rives Cream

This is an independent project of my own from which I will derive no compensation. While determining how best to allocate the profits, Jack Klimp’s work on behalf of NMCRS, detailed in the April issue of Shipmate, and Dick Evert’s work with the Armed Services YMCA of San Diego opened my eyes to the great opportunity to serve our enlisted community in these challenging times. We all know how these folks were instrumental in our own successes and how, in so many ways, their counterparts today can often need assistance in addition to their pay and allowances. The project, though my own, will make its donation in the name of all those whose purchases contributed to its success. Additionally, those who purchased will be able to vote on the donation's recipient.

For those of you not familiar with the copper plate reproduction process, what is known as “intaglio printing”, it is a multi-step, one print at a time procedure. After each impression, the plate must be thoroughly cleaned and carefully re-inked. Each print then undergoes a two-day drying and flattening procedure. Like your personal signature, each one is unique. As an additional enhancement, Susan will sign your individual copy.

I will be submitting orders to the printer that I have contracted with in blocks of 10, then each block will be shipped to Susan in Massachusetts for her signature. Although this will create some delay between your order date and your receipt, I am convinced you will find this minor inconvenience well worth the wait. You will be the owner of a one-of-its-kind creation of two talented artists and a timeless keepsake for your family – perhaps the last chance to purchase a memento of this high a quality. It is available in two paper colors – Somerset Cream or Rives Cream and will be mailed to you at no additional charge. For those of you interested in a different format, you can order a 17 by 22 inch digital print on high quality white stock.

So come aboard “68 Prints” and join with me to support our class and its worthy causes.