Commercial No.5 Typewriter
Visible Typewriters Co. &
Commercial Typewriters Co.
New York, NY
The No.5 was actually the 1st model offered by the Commercial brand. It was produced by the Visible Typewriters Co. / Commercial Typewirter Co. of NY which were really the same entity despite appearing to be separate on paper. You can read more on the history of the Commercial, including about the No.5 and its subsequent models, here. On this page I would like to focus on where my example came from and how I procured it.
It was a stunning Spring day. My family and I decided to take advantage of the weather and head west on I-84 to Steep Rock Preserve in Washington Depot, CT for a leisurely, kid-friendly hike. It was about and an hour and 20 minutes drive from home. We left in the morning, had lunch there, hiked a couple of trails and then returned home to central CT down the same stretch of highway. And just as we got home, that's when I received an email about this typewriter.
The woman who sent the email, Robin, wrote, "I have the attached typewriter. I am looking to sell it and saw that you are interested in this model," to which I replied, "I'm in love." After a few more emails and a couple phone calls, we agreed on the terms and, oddly enough, I was headed back west on I-84 - a peculiar coincidence because I seldom use this highway - to meet her and her husband at Westchester Airport to make the exchange.
The Commercial No.5, serial numbered 70, originally belonged to Robin's father-in-law. He was a shop owner in NY who actually used a Depression Era Remington standard well into the 1980s to fill out various forms. The Commercial No.5, however, was seldom used since he acquired it in the 1920s. After his passing, both typewriters were placed in a closet until Robin began spring cleaning.
I'm thoroughly appreciative to Robin and her husband, Peter, for letting me purchase this typewriter. It's a gem!
Need an instruction manual for your No.5 or No.6? Get them here...