Machine Monday: Pocket Typewriter

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The primitive machine was operated by placing it on a piece of paper with the enameled index to the right. The index was rotated until the desired character stood on the left. The letter was printed by pushing the index down onto the paper. The machine would then be pulled one space forward. Friction was caused by two rubber bands around the wooden roll.  Rubber type was attached to the bottom of the index wheel and inking was done by a roll on the right of the machine.

The quality of writing produced with the Pocket Typewriter depended completely on the even handedness of the operator. The slightest move would cause uncorrectable mis-alignment.

The Pocket Typewriter was marketed in France as the ‘Polyglotte’. It continued to be sold well into the 1890’s.

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