Ear­ly print­ers made their own type. Sub­se­quent­ly type­found­ing became a spe­cial­ist indus­try in its own right. Scot­tish type­founders made a dis­tinc­tive con­tri­bu­tion to type devel­op­ment, one lega­cy being the Scotch Roman type fam­i­ly.

In the 1740s, Alexan­der Wil­son set up a type foundry in Glas­gow in 1744, and the firm con­tin­ued to pro­duce type for a hun­dred years. William Miller worked for this firm, before estab­lish­ing a foundry in Edin­burgh in 1809. The firm became Miller & Richard in 1838, and remained in busi­ness until 1952 just off Nichol­son Street, sup­ply­ing type to firms all over the world.