It may be hard to believe, but as recently as 25 years ago most offices and businesses were using typewriters for preparing documents and letters and other material. Oh, wait a minute, you don’t know what a typewriter is?
According to Wikipedia, a “typewriter is a mechanical or electromechanical device with a set of keys that, when pressed, cause characters to be printed on a medium, usually paper. From their invention before 1870 through much of the 20th century, typewriters were indispensable tools for many professional writers and in business offices. By the end of the 1980s, word processors and personal computers had largely replaced the tasks previously accomplished with typewriters in the western world. Typewriters, however, remain in use in various areas of the world.”
For an office machine that was so widely used, its demise came dramatically with the growth of the personal computer industry. Today, users of typewriters are few and far between and finding the needed ribbons for the machines is a real task.
The Lakewood History Museum is currently showing a collection of typewriters of various kinds and sizes. Some of the machines in the exhibit are simple ones while others have a wide variety of options to perform a variety of tasks. At least one weighs about 25 pounds, an unusually heavy typewriter.
The typewriter exhibit, along with the other exhibits currently available in the museum, can be viewed from noon to 4 pm Wednesday through Saturday. Admittance is free. The Museum is located in the historic Lakewood Colonial Center at 6211 Mt. Tacoma Drive SW, Lakewood.