Paul Stansbury brushes a generous layer of ink on the rollers and stands back to watch as his successor, Jordan Hicks, feeds cardstock through a machine coated in grease. Rollers propel the paper forward, and out comes a grid of finished business cards.
“A lot of people say print’s a dying industry, but it really isn’t,” said Hicks, Scappoose resident and new owner of Paulson Printing Co. “A sheet of paper never runs out of battery. There’s always room for that.”
Paulson Printing Co., located at 125 N. 19th St in St. Helens, was established in 1935 by Paul S. Paulson and has been located in the same building since 1943. Stansbury and his business partner, Ken, are the duo handing off their printing press business with a long-standing history.
“It’s with a bit of nostalgia that we relinquish our ownership of Paulson Printing,” they wrote in a letter to friends and customers. “We feel we are putting it in capable hands.”
Hicks said he intends to deliver on the promises formerly held by the Stansburys, widening the scope of services while keeping the same high standard of printing in place.
“We’re not going to change anything dramatically,” Hicks said.
Examples of Paulson Printing at work are evident throughout the community. The sign in front of Scappoose High School was designed by none other than Hicks, who for 12 years has performed many different functions in the print business.
“I really know printing inside and out,” he said.
The print industry is invaluable to a collective of local businesses that rely on spreading the word through advertising, according to Hicks.
“People want to hold business cards; people want to hold forms and letters. So that’s what we do,” he said.
For Hicks, the benefits go beyond the work itself.
“I lived in Scappoose, I raised my children here, so I want to be part of the community,” he said.
“One of the reasons we decided to sell to Jordan is he is local, and we know that he will treat every customer with respect,” the Stansburys’ letter reads.
Due to inclement weather, the Stansburys have canceled their Farewell and Hello Open House event, an opportunity for customers to say goodbye to the current owners and be acquainted with the new owner. The event was scheduled to take place at Paulson Printing from 3 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 30.
Stansbury said he and Ken will still be working with customers until they turn over the keys to Hicks Jan. 2.