Thursday, August 11, 2011

Copy Cats

Thomas Edison's Mimeograph machine was licensed by A.B. Dick who invented the Mimeograph stencil in 1884. With Edison's support the two of them began advertising in 1888 and sold the machines for $12 to $30 depending upon the size.

By 1880, sales of Edison's copying system were in decline because of competing systems, such as the Cyclostyle. 

An 1895 ad for a rudimentary copying system which used pressure and moisture to duplicate a copy.

An adorable little lithographic press which sold in England in the 1850s, preceded Edison's Mimeograph. 

This system above used a master and a gelatin substance which absorbed ink when the original was placed onto a transfer tablet. This was called the Hektograph which was introduced in 1876. All of the images above are from the Early Office Museum which has a mountain of material on the history of printing and office equipment of the last 2 centuries. Well worth a visit and a read!  
At Strayer's Business College in Washington DC, 1928. I can almost smell the nasty spirit duplicator vapors. From a glass negative from the Harris & Ewing Collection via the Shorpy photo archive. Shorpy images are always clickable.

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