The Royal Typewriter Company – 1926
Throwback Thursday takes us to 1926 when the Royal Typewriter Company of Hartford, Connecticut made advertising history.
The Royal Typewriter Company originally got its start in Brooklyn, New York in 1906. The Company was a late contender to the typewriter industry; an industry full of well-known companies in heated competition for the best typewriter model. A few years after opening, The Royal Company introduced the Royal Model 5, a flatbed style typewriter that came with its own leather case. Although this model used a design meant for portability, it was not a true portable typewriter with a weight of 22 lbs. The Royal Company concentrated on updating their desktop models and would not produce a true portable typewriter until the 1920s.
In 1926, The Royal Typewriter Company moved from New York to a larger location in Hartford, Connecticut and released their new Portable Royal Typewriter the same year. They needed to come up with a grand idea to convince customers to buy a portable model instead of a desktop model. The idea became a piece of advertising history: Drop the new portable typewriters from an airplane to show just how durable they were. They bought a Ford Tri-Motor Airplane and parachuted the Royal Portable Typewriters to dealers at specific drop points across the nation. It was a tremendous success. Over 11,000 typewriters dropped at over 2,000 locations nationwide and only 6 were damaged. Over the next 20 years, the Royal Typewriter Company became the dominant force in its industry selling more than 1,400,000 Royal Portable Typewriters. Many notable people, including Bing Crosby, used and helped promote the Royal Typewriter Brand. Over the years Royal Typewriter Company would continue to surprise the public with new features. In 1936, the Royal Deluxe was released with touch tabulation and auto paper lock. Keeping In grand style, In 1947 Royal Company released a “gold plated” limited edition typewriter. This model, The Quiet Deluxe Gold Royal Typewriter, was purchased by such notable authors as American author Ernest Hemingway and British author Ian Fleming.
The invention of the typewriter transformed the fields of writing and communications. Connecticut was home to several name brand typewriter companies including The Royal Typewriting Company. The Gateway Museum at Nature’s Art Village is home to a large typewriting display, including this 1936 Royal Deluxe Portable Typewriter from The Royal Typewriting Company. Click on the photos above and below to view this piece closer, and visit The Gateway Museum at Nature’s Art Village on Route 85 in Montville, Connecticut to see our full typewriting display.