Blickensderfer typewriters have an unusual claim to fame: they’re extremely portable. Advertisements for the Blick in the late 1800s featured a series of characters: a commercial traveler who composes correspondence on a train, a military officer in a tent or on a warship, and a Reuters correspondent typing from the back of a camel.
The Blick portable typewriter weighs in at 6 pounds, and cost around $35 in 1900. This lightweight typewriter uses a DHIATENSOR keyboard rather than the “universal” QWERTY keyboard layout. The letters in DHIATENSOR occur in 85% of words, states the Blickensderfer manual.
Now, the only question is: if the ads say it weights 6 pounds, and it’s known as the “Five Pound Secretary,” then how much does the wooden case weigh?
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