Copyright 2011-2018 John N. Lupia, III

Robert Savage is one of the most distinguished American engravers of all time. He engraved postage stamps for several countries, bank notes and paper money for more than 31 countries, and corporate bonds, and stock certificate vignettes during his tenure as an engraver - becoming Chief Engraver of the Picture Engraving Department of the American Bank Note Company (ABNC).

Fig. 1. Passport photograph of Robert Savage in 1922.

Robert Savage (1868-1943), was born on October 10, 1868 at Belfast, Ireland, son of Robert Savage Sr., (1830-1911).
His family immigrated to America in 1872 settling in New York City.

In 1885, Savage became an engraver in the firm of Baldwin & Gleason, New York City. Thomas Gleason (1850-) was a former employee of the ABNC.

On March 19, 1887, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States of America.

On February 10, 1891, he joined the American Bank Note Company, Hunt's Point, Bronx, New York.

He married Mary Elizabeth, a native New Yorker, on July 25, 1896.

In 1907, Savage became Chief Engraver, Superintendent of the Picture Engraving Department of the American Bank Note Company, Hunt's Point, Bronx, New York

In September 1925, Savage retired from the ABNC.

In 1943, the ABNC asked Savage to help create the portrait of Chang-kai-shek. Leaving it unfinished he fell ill and died. The work was completed by engraver William Ford.

Savage died in Orlando, Orange County, Florida on July 23, 1943. He is buried at Woodlawn Memorial Park, Gotha, Orange County, Florida.

Bibliography :

The Numismatist, August (1987) : 1609
The Numismatist, September (1989) : 1415
The Numismatist, September (1990) : 1422
The Numismatist, December (1992) : 1728
Gene Hessler, The Engraver's Line (Port Clinton : BNR Press, 1993) : 7 (Columbian postage stamp vignettes), 121 (see Wm F. Ford, on Chang-kai-shek portrait), 140 (see Thomas Gleason), 189 (see Joseph Keller), 258, bio of Savage.
Gene Hessler, "More 1993 Anniversaries," The Numismatist, November (1993) : 1581-1582