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The Bar-Lock Typewriter , which had a double keyboard, was introduced in 1889. The name

The Bar-Lock Typewriter, which had a double keyboard, was introduced in 1889. The name of the machine refers to a mechanism that locked the type-bars in position while they printed. In 1896, the Bar-Lock type writer's name in the U.S. was changed to Columbia Bar-Lock. During 1896- 99, U.S. ads claimed that the machine was widely used in offices and by the Navy. See illustration to the right.

The machine was sold as the Royal Bar-Lock in Great Britain. A c. 1898 English ad for the Royal Bar- Lock stated that the machine had "fifty thousand users." The ad stated that over 200 of the machines were being used by Lever Brothers Ltd., over 60 in total by the London, Glasgow, and Liverpool municipal governments combined, over 40 by the London and Lancashire Fire Insurance Co., and over 30 each by the Secretary's Department of the General Post Office, by Arthur Guinness, Sons & Co., by the Eastern and Associated Telegraph Cos., and by the English offices of the Mutual Life Insurance Co. of New York. In 1899, an ad claimed that the Sunlight Soap Co. was using over 160 Royal Bar-Locks. In 1901, an ad claimed that 150 Royal Bar-Locks were used in post offices in the UK. E. H. Beach, Tools of Business, 1905, states that the British royal palaces used five times as many Bar-Locks as all other makes combined, that the three largest British city governments (London, Glasgow, and Liverpool) used eight times as many Bar-Locks as all other makes combined, and that the three largest companies (The Bank of England, the Eastern Telegraph Co., and Messrs. Dever Brothers, Ltd.) used nine times as many Bar- Locks as all other makes combined. Beach also states that the British war office and admiralty used over 400 Bar-Locks. The photo to the right shows a number of Bar-Locks in an English office.

Other downstrike typewriters were the Horton Typewriter (1886) and Salter Typewriter (1892). The earlier of the two Horton models weighs 19 lb. The 1892 Franklin weighs 11.5 lb.

Single element machines used type-shuttles, type-wheels, or type-sleeves rather than type-bars. These type-elements

Single element machines used type-shuttles, type-wheels, or type-sleeves rather than type-bars. These type-elements rotated and moved either up and down or side to side to position the correct letter. One of the selling points of most single-element typewriters was that the type-elements could be changed to permit typing in different fonts and languages. Both Hammond and Blickensderfer sold over 100 different type- elements. Key tops could be changed to facilitate typing in different languages. It is reported that most single-element machines were slower than typebar machines because the single-element returned to its base position between characters.

The most successful early single-element machine, the Hammond type-shuttle typewriter, is described in our Antique Office Typewriters gallery.

Index typewriters do not have keyboards. Generally, one hand operates a pointer that selects a

Index typewriters do not have keyboards. Generally, one hand operates a pointer that selects a letter from an index while the other hand depresses a lever that moves the type to the paper.

The first practical index typewriters, the American Hall Type Writer (1881) and the German Hammonia Typewriter, were introduced in the early 1880s, several years after the first keyboard typewriter. Index typewriters were much cheaper than keyboard typewriters during the 1880s and 1890s, and advertisements for index typewriters stressed this fact. Index typewriters generally sold for $10-$20, although the Hall was $40. (See advertisement to the left and table below.) In 1895 the Champion Typewriter Co. advertised that over 9,000 Champions were in use in the U.S.

Malling Hansen's Writing Ball c. 1870

Malling Hansen's Writing Ball c. 1870 The Hansen Writing Ball was invented in 1865 by the

The Hansen Writing Ball was invented in 1865 by the reverend and principal of the Royal Institute for the deaf-mutes in Copenhagen, Rasmus Malling-Hansen, 1835-1890. The writing ball was first patented and entered production in 1870, and was the first commercially produced typewriter. In Danish it was called theskrivekugle. The Hansen ball was a combination of unusual design and ergonomic innovations, but like most of the early 19th century typewriters, it did not allow the paper to be seen as it passed through the device.

Its distinctive feature was an arrangement of 52 keys on a large brass hemisphere, causing the machine to resemble a giant pin cushion. From the book Hvem er Skrivekuglens Opfinder, written by Malling- Hansen's daughter Johanne Agerskov, we know how Malling-Hansen made experiments with a model of his writing ball made out of porcelain. He tried out different placements of the letters on the keys, to work out the placement that led to the quickest writing speed. He ended up placing the most frequently used letters to be touched by the fastest writing fingers, and also placed most of the vowels to the left and the consonants to the right. This, together with the short pistons which went directly through the ball, made the writing speed of the writing ball very fast.

The first models typed on a paper attached to a cylinder, and included an electromagnetic escapement for the Ball, thus making Malling-Hansen's machine the first electric typewriter. He made several improvements on his invention throughout the 1870's and -80's, and in 1874 he patented the next model, and now the cylinder was replaced by a flat mechanical paper-frame. The electromagnetic battery was still used to move the paper along as the Ball typed upon it, and the design led to a lower possibility for error. Malling-Hansen improved further on his design, and created a semi-cylindrical frame to hold one sheet of paper. This best known model was first patented in 1875, and now the battery was replaced by a mechanical escapement. All these improvements made for a simpler and more compact writing apparatus.

The IBM Selectric typewriter (occasionally known as the IBM Golfball typewriter) was an influential model

The IBM Selectric typewriter (occasionally known as the IBM Golfball typewriter) was an influential model line of electric typewriters. It was introduced in 1961.

Instead of a "basket" of pivoting typebars the Selectric had a pivoting type element (frequently called a "typeball") that could be changed so as to display different fonts in the same document, resurrecting a capacity that had been pioneered by the moderately successful Blickensderfer typewriter sixty years before. The Selectric also replaced the traditional typewriter's moving carriage with a paper roller ("platen") that stayed stationary while the typeball and ribbon mechanism moved from side to side.

Selectrics and their descendants eventually captured 75 percent of the United States market for electric typewriters used in business.

Sholes was a U.S. mechanical engineer who invented the first practical modern typewriter, patented in

Sholes was a U.S. mechanical engineer who invented the first practical modern typewriter, patented in 1868. Sholes invented the typewriter with partners S. W. Soule and G. Glidden, that was manufactured (by Remington Arms Company) in 1873. He was born February 14, 1819 in Mooresburg, Pennsylvania, and died on February 17, 1890 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Before the computer, the typewriter may have been the most significant everyday business tool. Christopher Latham Sholes and his colleagues, Carlos Glidden and Samuel Soulé, invented the first practical typewriting machine in 1866. Five years, dozens of experiments, and two patents later, Sholes and his associates produced an improved model similar to today's typewriters.

The type-bar system and the universal keyboard were the machine's novelty, but the keys jammed easily. To solve the jamming problem, another business associate, James Densmore, suggested splitting up keys for letters commonly used together to slow down typing. This became today's standard "QWERTY" keyboard.

It was called the "Sholes & Glidden Type Writer," and it was produced by the

It was called the "Sholes & Glidden Type Writer," and it was produced by the gunmakers E. Remington & Sons in Ilion, NY from 1874-1878. It was not a great

success (not more than 5,000 were sold), but it founded a worldwide industry, and it brought mechanization to dreary, time-consuming office work.

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The idea began at Kleinsteuber's Machine Shop in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the year 1868. A local publisher-politician-philosopher named Christopher Latham Sholes spent

hours at Kleinstuber's with fellow tinkerers, eager to participate in the Age of Invention to produce devices to improve the lot of Mankind.

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It's said Sholes was working on a machine to automatically number the pages in books, when one of his colleagues suggested the idea might be extended to a device to print the entire alphabet. An article from "Scientific American" was passed around, and the gentlemen nodded in agreement that "typewriting" (the phrase coined in SA) was the

wave of the future.

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Sholes thought of a simple device with a piece of printer's type mounted on a little rod,

mounted to strike upward to a flat plate which would hold a piece of carbon paper sandwiched with a piece of stationery. The percussive strike of the type should produce an impression on the paper. Sholes' demonstration model looked like this:

Keyboard typewriters Keyboard typewriters are typewriters that are operated by pushing a key, or combination

Keyboard typewriters

Keyboard typewriters are typewriters that are operated by pushing a key, or combination of keys in order to print a letter or character onto the paper.

Between the 1880s and 1910s many people favored the so-called full keyboard that had individual keys for each individual letter, capital, figure and symbol (for samples, see Upstrike typewriters). The best knowns full keyboard machines were the Caligraph and the Smith Premier.

The division we use here between different sorts of keyboard typewriters is not based on the keyboard itself, but on the way the characters are actually typed onto the paper. The difference is explained on each of the linked index pages, that can be found when you click the links on the left.

Upstrike Keyboard typewriters If you put type on the end of a typebar, and print

Upstrike Keyboard typewriters

If you put type on the end of a typebar, and print by swinging the bar against the paper, the typebar needs to fall back into its original position. Otherwise, you would have to pull it back manually, before striking the next key. The easiest way to achieve this is by using gravity.

It wasn't even Christopher Latham Sholes who followed this train of thought for the first time. He was just the first to build such a machine that was actually mass-produced.

The Austrian carpenter Peter Mitterhofer had built a typewriter with the same odd upstrike system ten years earlier. The only difference was that his machine was made completely out of wood, and nobody was interested in mass production.

Obvious as it may seem today that you can see what you writer, the 'blind writing' upstrike typewriter was the benchmark machine for more than 20 years and the Remington Typewriter Company kept up production of this clumsy system until 1915, despite the fact that the first truly visible writers had already appeared in 1895.

This section of the museum presents only upstrike typewriters, with single keyboards and a shift key, and with 'full keyboards' where each character had its own key.

Downstrike keyboard typewriters If you can't read what you write when the letters hit the

Downstrike keyboard typewriters

If you can't read what you write when the letters hit the paper from below, the most logical thing to do would be to have the letters strike the paper from above. So there they are: the downstrike typewriters.

Striking down onto the paper creates new design problems, because the upright typebars are inevitably in the way. And so the designers came up with every possible solution. Downstriking from the front, from the side, from the back, from above, with a grasshopper jump and at an angle.

Frontstrike Keyboard Typewriters The most comfortable way to type of course, is with the written

Frontstrike Keyboard Typewriters

The most comfortable way to type of course, is with the written text at a pleasant angle in front of you. But it took 20 years after the introduction of the Sholes & Glidden until the Daugherty appeared, the first 'modern' typewriter.

The typebars lay backwards in the type basket, swung up when a key was hit, printed a letter on the front of the platen and fell back. The Daugherty failed miserably in the market, but next came the Underwood that set a standard for mechanical typewriters that would last a century.

But there were other frontstrike typewriters also, like the so-called thrust- action machines, that actually pushed the type against the paper. Good examples are the Ford, the Wellington/Empire, the Adler and the Kanzler.

Single element machines When IBM introduced the famous golf ball system on its electric typewriters

Single element machines

When IBM introduced the famous golf ball system on its electric typewriters in the 1950s, this was generally regarded as a major breakthrough in typewriter technology. Few people realized that the concept of the single element typewriter was already 70 years old at the time.

It was James Hammond, inventor of the Hammond typewriter who was the first to combine all the characters he needed on his typewriter on a single piece of metal.

The advantage of this was that the rest of the mechanism would be used only to bring the right character to the front.

The advantages were obvious. Single element machines never jammed, their alignment was perfect, type faces could easily be changed and they didn't need as many parts and regular machines, which meant that they were also usually cheaper.

There were disadvantages also. Unless the actual type element struck the paper (as on the Blickensderfer), a hammer system had to be used to strike the paper against the type. And this led to strange contraptions to hold the paper (Hammond and Fitch).

Thürey First year of production: Company: Thürey Schreibmaschinen Gesellschaft, Cologne, Germany Serial nr: n.a. 1909

Thürey

First year of production:

Company: Thürey Schreibmaschinen Gesellschaft, Cologne, Germany

Serial nr: n.a.

1909

The Thürey typewriter is one of these rare attempts to completely break with conventions that were already in place in 1909 and build a machine that was one of kind. And it is. It was also a commercial failure.

The keyboard of the Thürey consists of six vertical rows of keys attached to bars that are positioned sideways on the top of the machine. By pressing a key a typewheel is turned into position with the correct character facing forward, while a hammer swings forward from behind the paper (see pic 6). The hammer however, is not spring-driven as it is on the Hammond, but receives its momentum from the force with which a key is struck. Inking is done with two ink rolls.

The machine, with a charming wooden handle on the right for lifting, is exactly twice as wide as the carriage, and one of the flattest designs around.

Travis Typewriter First year of production: Company: Philadelphia Typewriter Company, Philadelphia, USA Serial nr: 2006

Travis Typewriter

First year of production:

Company: Philadelphia Typewriter Company, Philadelphia, USA Serial nr: 2006

1895

Information is scarce about the Travis Typewriter. Different sources date this machine in 1905. However, documentation exists that shows that the Travis was invented by Byron Brooks who had, in 1885, developed the Brooks typewriter, a backstroke machine with a double shift.

Brooks sold the patents for his new machine to William Travis of the Philadelphia Typewriter Company. The PTC built the machine and put it on the market locally. The company apparently ceased to exist by 1900. Very few Travis Typewriters were produced. The machine is extremely rare today.

The Travis featured a four-row keyboard and a horizontally placed typewheel. The paper was struck by a hammer from behind and pressed against the typewheel, much like the Chicago and Hammond. The paper had to be rolled into a cylinder under the hammer.

Sterling (improved) First year of production: Company: Sterling Typewriter Co, New York, USA Serial nr:

Sterling (improved)

First year of production:

Company: Sterling Typewriter Co, New York, USA

Serial nr: 3309

1905

The Sterling typewriter was a three-row swinging sector typewriter, developed by C.J. Paulson. The machine was produced with the name Eagle in 1905. Production was apparently resumed in 1910 or 1911 as the Sterling.

The principle of the Sterling is very similar to that of the Hammond, with a single type element swinging around a vertical rod (see pic 6).

Not many details are known about its production history.

Postal 3 First year of production: Company: Postal Typewriter Co.,New York, USA Serial nr: 10619

Postal 3

First year of production:

Company: Postal Typewriter Co.,New York, USA Serial nr: 10619

1902

The Postal seems like a cross breed between the Blickensderfer and the Hammond. The machine had a typewheel almost identical to the Blick and the way it turned was controlled by a series of upright pins, similar to the Hammond turret.

The Postal printed through a ribbon, that was fixed to two parallel ribbon spools, right behind the platen. With the typewheel striking down onto the platen, with the ribbon under it, the writing was in effect invisible.

There are said to be 8 different models of the Postal, but in fact only three have been reported, of which the number 7 is very rare.

The Postal 3 (presented here) and 5 (with a raised scale above the platen) are the relatively most common Postals.

The Postal was exported to Germany, Austria, Russia and France.

Phönix First year of production: Company: Gesellschaft fur Apparate-und Maschinenbau, Berlin, Germany Serial nr: n.a

Phönix

First year of production:

Company: Gesellschaft fur Apparate-und Maschinenbau, Berlin,

Germany Serial nr: n.a

1908

The Phönix was originally called Merkur but the name was changed to Phönix (the firebird) after the producer changed its name to 'Company for the production of machines and appliances'. With the Lambert, the Phönix is the only machine with a fixed keyboard. But the first comparison of course is with the Blickensderfer.

The raised typewheel that strikes down onto the platen is very close to the system that made the Blick great. But the keyboard on this machine is very odd. When a key is pushed, the entire keyboard tilts and goes down, while turning the typewheel into position and printing the paper. The keyboard has 28 keys and there are two shift keys for capitals and characters.

The machine was produced for a very short time only and few examples survive.

Munson 2 First year of production: Company: Munson Typewriter Company, Chicago, USA Serial nr: 7877

Munson 2

First year of production:

Company: Munson Typewriter Company, Chicago, USA

Serial nr: 7877

1890’s

The Munson 2 is the machine that was re-released after a couple of years as the Chicago typewriter. It was a covered version of the Munson 1, a machine introduced in 1890 of which the mechanism was virtually identical to that of the later Chicago.

The Munson was designed by S.J. Siefried and J.E. Munson of New York. The machine was produced in a factory in Chicago, owned by Fred and Louis Munson.

The Munson 2 had a horizontal type sleeve with the hammer that struck the paper from behind to push it against the sleeve, similar to the Hammond. Before the machine could be used, the typist would have to slide the rail holding the hammer out to the left to bring the hammer into position.

The Munson company produced the machine until 1897, when the patents for the machine were sold to Edgar Hill of Chicago who took up production of the Chicago typewriter.

Moya Visible 3 First year of production: 1906 Company: Moya Typewriter Company.,Leicester, UK Serial nr:

Moya Visible 3

First year of production:

1906

Company:

Moya Typewriter Company.,Leicester, UK

Serial nr:

3979

Hidalgo Moya was a Spanish-American who married a girl from Leicester, England. When he moved back to Europe, he brought an interesting invention with him: the Moya Typewriter. He went into business with his father-in-law and built a factory in Leicester.

The Moya typewriter, that operated with a typesleeve similar to the Crandall, was not a very successful machine. Not too many were sold between 1902 and 1905, when the improved Moya Visible 2 appeared.

The type sleeve with six rows of characters was turned and shifted by an intricate system of gears and levers. Printing was done by the sleeve that moved forward onto the platen. Some further improvements to the mechanism were made and in 1906 the Moya 3 appeared, that is presented on this page.

Although few machines were built and sold, the Moya was exported to several countries, where it appeared with different names, such as Sekretar, Ideal and Baka (see Pic 6-Mantelli coll.)

In 1908 production of the Moya was stopped in favor of a new invention by Hidalgo Moya, a downstrike machine that would become a major success: the Imperial. The Imperial Typewriter Company of Leicester would continue to produce typewriters until well into the 1960s.

First year of production: McCool 2 1909 Company: Acme-Keystone Manufacturing Co.,Beaver Falls, Pa, USA Serial

First year of production:

McCool 2

1909

Company:

Acme-Keystone Manufacturing Co.,Beaver Falls, Pa, USA

Serial nr:

1718

The Acme-Keystone Manufacturing Co. of Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, was not the most successful of typewriter producers. The three machines it produced, the Keystone, the Sterling and the McCool 2 (there is no McCool 1) are all very rare today.

The McCool was a relatively cheap 3-bank keyboard typewriter. It used a typewheel similar to the Blickensderfer, a hammer that strikes from behind from a sliding rail like the Chicago, and an impression strip along the carriage, similar to the Hammond (photo 3).

Very little is known about the history of the machine. It was invented by William A. McCool who was granted a patent in 1910. The machine was apparently for sale in 1909. Not many were made.

Lambert First year of production: 1902 Company: Lambert Typewriter Company, New York, USA Serial nr:

Lambert

First year of production: 1902

Company:

Lambert Typewriter Company, New York, USA

Serial nr:

3205

Frank Lambert was a French immigrant to the United States. He started work on his typewriter in the 1880s, with the earliest patent dating back to 1884. The machine wasn't marketed until 1902 and it was a remarkable success.

The Lambert typewriter is unique in shape and technology. It is the only keyboard typewriter on which the keyboard consists of one single piece. On pushing a key, the entire keyboard and the attached type stamp (pic 6) swivelled into position and printed the correct letter onto the paper. The Lambert is often mistaken for an index typewriter.

There were three models of the Lambert Typewriter. The first 3000 machines had a keyboard that could be rotated to the left and right, to allow it to write a crude form of italic letters. In fact they were normal, Roman style letters printed at an angle. This feature was dropped on the Lambert 2 (after serial number 3000) that had a fixed keyboard. The machines were otherwise identical, with the embossed name on the base plate. A small handle to the left, under the keyboard (pic 5) allowed for 'shifting' - it put the stamp in position to print either lower case, capitals or figures.

Later, a Lambert 3 appeared with a slightly wider carriage and a non-embossed base. That machine bore a decal with the name Lambert. The difference in size of the carriage and body is clearly visible in the next picture:

The Lambert 3 also appeared as the Butler and the Garden City. Outside the United States the machine was produced in London by the Gramophone and Typewriter Company, and in Lambert's home country France.