1906 - 1916
Secor Typewriter Company
Derby, Connecticut, US
Jerome Burgess Secor (1839 - 1923), a thoroughly inventive inventor, began working for the Williams Typewriter Co. in 1899 as its superintendent and as early as 1902 he began filing various typewriter patents which he assigned to the company. The patents, of which there were several of over the next few years, were for frontsrike typewriters and not for any like the Williams (see patent no.789,929). Eventually, on June 4, 1910, after legal problems surmounted for the Williams company, Jerome assumed ownership it which included the factory. The Williams Typewriter Co. then became the Secor Typewriter Co.
It is interesting to note that the Secor No.1 model was first introduced around 1906 which indicates that they were made side-by-side with Williams typewriter. The two brands were also marketed together on occasion. It would be reasonable to speculate that the more modern Secor was intended to replace the outdated Williams given that the patents were assigned to the Williams company but that never came to fruition.
It wouldn't be unfair to state that Secor typewriters offered very few innovations. Their crux seems to have been "permanent alignment," though it was true for every other typewrite as well. A removable, interchangeable escapement was also a much hyped feature. Secors had frontstrike typebar arrangements with a single-shift, four-row keyboard. Models produced included a 76-character No.1, ca.1906, an 84-character No.2, ca.1908 and a wide-carriage No.3. An estimated 7,000 typewriters were produced between the three models. These rather traditional typewriters were a major departure from the captivating designs of the Williams brand that once shipped from the same loading docks. With the looming war, pressure from more established competition and reported labor issues, the Secor's days were numbered and in 1916 production ceased permanently. The factory in Derby, CT was sold to Maxim Munitions Corporation.
Jerome Burgess Secor
So do we feel sorry for Jerome B. Secor and his seemingly failed typewriter company? No. This venture was just one of the many that Jerome had undertaken in his life. His enduring legacies are actually in toy and sewing machine manufacturing. Google his name and your search results will most likely yield countless contribution to those industries. You'll probably note that most of the search results will direct you to the mechanical toys and mechanical singing birds he produced. Jerome's toys have a much larger following of collectors whom are more willing to spend exponentially more money for the little play things than would typewriter collectors for his typewriters.
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