- The McLoughlin Bros. Typewriter, Circa 1884 -

The McLoughlin Brothers,  New York manufacturers of children's toys and board games, brought this typewriter to market in 1884.  It was advertised as a child's toy, at a price of ten dollars - a hefty sum in its day.  These were the early years of the typewriter industry and the concept of a toy typewriter had yet to be introduced.  The McLoughlin printed via a circular index with corresponding metal type on a disc beneath it.  The typist would rotate the lever on the index to the desired character and depress the plate downward into the platen.  It printed in capital letters only and also included numbers and punctuation marks.  A blank spot was provided for spacing between words.  Inking was provided by two ink rollers that rubbed against the type face.  It was well built, with a robust, cast iron frame and a nine inch wide platen, capable of accommodating a full size business letterhead.  The McLoughlin typewriter was an early, if not the first, attempt at marketing a toy typewriter, yet it was so well made that it may have found other uses. 

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This page was created on November 27, 2008