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Trade catalogues

















Typewriter producers and dealers often printed catalogues describing their range of products and accessories.

These catalogues are important sources of information, because in their description they betray what sellers and producers regarded as the USP's and technical breakthroughs of each individual machine.

Also, trade catalogues often list optional extra's and accessories for machines of which no examples are known to exist today.

This page shows several samples:

1 This trade catalogue for the Oliver Way-Billing typewriter is an example of a machine of which no surviving examples are known at this time. The machine is an Oliver 2, fitted with a special tabulator-like contraption on the right and connected figure keys.

2. This set of papers concerning the newly introduced Williams 4 typewriter (1900) was found in the drawer of an old desk. The papers not only describe the many features of the Williams typewriter, they also included a sample lease contract for the machine.

3. Typewriter Headquarters of Broadway, New York was an important typewriter dealer. In their extensive 1892 catalogue they list comparative features as well as prices for different machines. There are also many pages of user testimonials.

4. In 1891 the Remington company produced a small booklet called "Early efforts". In small cartoons it told the story of the written word, ending of course with the Remington Standard 2 typewriter that was offered for sale for 95 dollars.
The brochure claims that in 1891 more than 100,000 Remingtons were in use, as well as a total of 40,000 machines of other brands.
The back cover has a lovely cartoon of an elderly gentleman watching a young lady through the window. She's working on a typewriter. The text says:
The Deacon's Premonition of Old Age.
"Well, I swow to gosh! I must be gettin' def. I can't hear the first sound of the tune that gal's a playin'. But - gee whittaker! heow she does make that pioner go!"

5. The Hammond company published an extensive brochure in 1907 on the introduction of the Hammond 12. With pride the company showed a whole series of pictures of its new factory on the East River in New York. The series is reproduced elsewhere in this virtual museum.

6. Working on the right kind of paper was as important for typewriters as it is for printers today. The Blickensderfer company made this little sample booklet showing more than 20 sorts of paper that the company sold.