Ultimately, Charles A. Bennett's little dynamo is the smallest typewriter ever produced with a full keyboard. They well both stateside and abroad.

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ca.1910

Bennett Typewriter Co.

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, US

Charles Almon Bennett (1850 - 19??) began manufacturing this typewriter, which he named after himself, in 1910. It was the successor to the Junior (patent no.670,889) which was introduced in 1907. The Junior lacked a paper table, utilized ink rollers and purportedly had alignment issues. Within the Bennett, the alignment problems were addressed (patent no.810,245), ribbon spools replaced the ink rollers and a folding paper table was added.

From early advertisements it is safe to assume that C. Bennett resolved to manufacture the most portable typewriter available with a fully functional keyboard. At just $18, the price tag was small, too. Marketing campaigns primarily targeted professionals on the go. Early ads also let us know that the typewriters were, in Charles Bennett's opinion, outsourced to be "...made from best materials, by experts..." at the Elliott-Fisher Billing Machine Factory in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. C. Bennett had no factory of his own, just sales offices.

Typing on one of these is, well, not great. The keys are much too close together which causes the typist to hit the wrong key(s) regularly. After a bit of typing the wrists would take a serious beating. Interestingly, when you press any one key in any tier all the keys under it will depress as well. For example, press the q and the a & z keys also depress, press the i and the k & n depress, too. Plus, when you press the awkwardly positioned space bar the t, y, g & h keys depress right along. If one could type quickly with this machine, the Blickensderfer-like typewheel would probably never jam so that's a plus.

Bennetts measure about 11" by 5" by 2" and weigh just 4-1/2 lbs. They type 84 characters from a standard QWERTY keyboard. Most Bennetts have an aluminum finish while others are painted black. One 1912 advertisement claims that there were 22,000 Bennetts already in use. The claim is plausible.

Bennett