Important words — the painstakingly chosen bon mot — the lexicographical gem — Ernest Hemingway regarded the careful selection of each to be so crucial that, in his rough drafts, he would set four, five typewriter spaces between each one to be continuously mindful of each word’s singular worth.

Under the direction of Scott Vile, the Ascensius Press seeks to reflect the care every great writer takes in converting thoughts and concepts into words, and you can experience our commitment to the writer’s art in every work we produce; in the typographical design, paper selection, hand-sewn spines, choice leather bindings, and fine marbled paper.

We have had the pleasure of publishing our own exquisitely designed letterpress editions of such great works as Thoreau’s The Maine Woods and Edith Wharton's Ethan Frome. We have also designed and produced both letterpress and offset works for many of the nation's preeminent private libraries including the John Carter Brown Library, the Boston Athenaeum, and the Grolier Club. We work with other dedicated designers to manage and supervise the printing of their works as well. Underlying it all is a focus on meticulous detail and unparalleled customer service.

For a printing quote or to discuss a book design, please call us at 207.780.1288.

The Ascensius Portfolio:

     ESF: Extra Special Fine Press Publishing
     Book Design & Production
     Quality Offset Lithography


The American Association of Rhodes Scholars
Bates College
Ben Kinmont, Bookseller
The Boston Athenaeum
Boston Public Library
Bowdoin College Library
Bruce McKittrick Rare Books
Charles Wood, Bookseller
The Colonial Society of Massachusetts
The Grolier Club of NY
Jensen Baird Gardner & Henry
The John Carter Brown Library
Maine Historical Society
The Marine Society of Salem
Marvin Sadik Fine Arts
The Massachusetts Historical Society
The New England Quarterly
Portland Public Library
Princeton University
Saint Anselm College, The Geisel Library
Smith College
The Somerset Club
Thomas Jefferson Foundation
University of Denver
Wilsey Rare Books


The Maine Woods/Thoreau (45 copies) 2000, v, 240 pp.
Ethan Frome/Edith Wharton (50 Copies)2002, vii, 112 pp.
The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth/Thomas Jefferson (5 copies) 1997, vii, 36 pp.
The Metamorphosis/Franz Kafka (100 copies) 1993, vii, 48 pp.


Stephen Harvard Award 2000 and 2002
Member, Letterpress Guild of New England 1989
Member, The Society of Printers, 1992
Member, The Grolier Club, 1998


Bates College
Hawthorne Longfellow Library, Bowdoin College
Houghton Library, Harvard University
Newberry Library, Chicago
New York Public Library
Portland Public Library

Who was Ascensius?