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Saturday, 4 June 2011

On This Day in Typewriter History (XV)

It was on this day in 2007 that acclaimed Australian writer and poet David Malouf launched his book Typewriter Music, which naturally contains the poem Typewriter Music:
This highly recommended book is still readily available on eBay.
David George Joseph Malouf was born in Brisbane on March 20, 1934. Typewriter Music, Malouf's first collection of poems in 26 years, was launched by University of Queensland Vice-Chancellor Professor John Hay at the university’s art museum. (This is not the same John Hay who is co-author, with Colin and Mary Jones, of the Australian book Demise of the Typewriter.) To mark the occasion of the launching of Typewriter Music, the head of the university’s school of music, Professor Philip Bracanin, composed a short piece, also entitled Typewriter Music, and it was performed on the night by the Sanctuary String Quartet. Among his many works, Malouf has written libretti for three operas, including Voss, an adaptation of the Patrick White novel.
Malouf still uses an Erika manual portable typewriter. He writes his drafts in pen and then types them.
It was on this day in 1940 that then British Prime Minister Winston Churchill delivered his famous “We Shall Fight on the Beaches” speech to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
On this day in 1907, typewriter inventor, engineer and patent practice councillor-at-law Burnham Coos Stickney, of Elizabeth, New Jersey, was granted a patent for an improved tabulation mechanism for the Underwood Typewriter Company.
Stickney wrote in his description, “Usually in machines of this character the denomination stops are normally in ineffective positions, and any stop may be projected by its key to effective position. In the construction herein described, the denomination stops are mounted to be normally in effective position, and key-operated devices are provided for moving one or more stops together out of effective position, whereby the first stop not so moved is enabled to co-act with the column stop for arresting the carriage at the desired point.”  Get it? (Images: above, of the Underwood 5, from Paul Robert's The Virtual Typewriter Museum; below, of the Underwood 3, from Guy PĂ©rard's
Burnham C.Stickney's signature is on many typewriter patents, either as inventor or attorney.
He was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on April 9, 1864, the son of a cabinet-maker, John H.Stickney. His great-grandfather was a second lieutenant in the Massachusetts regiment of Lieutenant-Colonel Nathaniel Wade during the War of Independence. Wade was the man appointed by George Washington to replace Benedict Arnold after Arnold defected to the British side.

1 comment:

Rob Bowker said...

Congrats on the big 10K by the way.