Though quite basic, the Darling was a well constructed index typewriter. To operate, the user would select a character from the circular index by swinging the selector then depressing it to print. The carriage advanced by tension from a single, long spring that spanned the length of the carriage and then looped back to span the same distance again. By nudging the carriage on the left side towards the rear, the escapement would be released so the carriage could be returned. Positioning the selector in one of the 3 slots found on the inner orange ring allowed the user to toggle between uppercase, lowercase and figures. Ink transferred by roller.
Credit: Peter Weil Typewriter Archive
1911 - 1913
The Darling Typewriter Co.
The Darling was patented in 1911 by Samuel Gertsch and company of Fleurier, Switzerland under Swiss patent no.52728. It was produced by Rymtowt-Prince & Co. of Geneva which also produced the Velograph. The Darling Typewriter Co., also of Fleurier, was established to sell the machine.
The handbill on this page courtesy of the Peter Weil Typewriter Archive indicates that French speaking citizens of Switzerland could either contact agent Jules-Albert Vouga of Cortaillod, directly to purchase a Darling, or visit a cycle shop in Fleurier. Price for the typewriter was 75 francs which included a 1-year guarantee.
Credit: Sotheby's Auction
Known serial numbers range from the 40s to just over 1k. Of those, most resemble the example on this page with the reddish-brown, leather-clad base and cover. However, a version with square black pads on the base and a black cover is known as well as an example which consists of just the head (no base or carriage) that has been dubbed the Pocket Darling. Lastly, there is an example in the 3k serial number range labeled as the New American. It was meant for US markets with distribution handled by the Robert Ingersoll & Bro. Co. of Ney York.
The Darling Typewriter Co. went out of business in 1913 but its inventor, Samuel Gertsch, was not yet done with writing machines. He was already in development of the Sphinx. and, later, his company produced the Constançon No.2.
It should be noted that a German made typewriter named the Trebla was introduced in 1910 which was also offered as a Darling name variant. It and the example on this page were unrelated despite the erroneous claims of several older publications.