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What made it unique

Normally, a labeling variation is unimportant, but occasionally some unique lettering or emblem increases the collectibility of a machine. In my last post, I asked what made this particular Corona 3 (pictured above) unique, and Richard Polt nailed it: the word “Incorporated” is printed just below the company name. Later, “Inc.” would be printed after the name.

Significant? Not entirely, but this variant marks the precise moment a small, hopeful enterprise became the dominant manufacturer of portable typewriters. The Corona 3 was a massively successful machine for nearly three decades.

The more common label, with “Inc.” just after company name.

(ETCetera offers an interesting article on the early versions of the Corona 3 here.)

Previously, Corona was known as the Standard Typewriter Company, which was problematic as nearly every manufactuer included “standard” in its name: the Royal Standard Typewriter Company, the Remington Standard Typewriter Company, the Underwood Standard Typewriter Company, etc.

In 1886, Remington (which was briefly organized as the “Standard typewriter manufacturing company”) complained publically about the appropriation of the term:

From The Indianapolis News, August 25, 1886.

So “Standard Typewriter Company” was confusing, and especially in foreign markets where consumers wondered which company was Standard.

The future Corona was also locked in a legal dispute with its prior sales agent, the Standard Folding Typewriter Sales Company. In that dispute, Standard sued the Sales Company for patent infringement in 1910, the parties litigating through 1913. When Standard adopted Corona as its name in 1914, it further distanced itself from the Sales Company, which despite prevailing did not emerge whole. Corona grew to become the dominant manufacturer of portable typewriters in the 1910s, and the Sales Company became a footnote.

The labeling variation, which appeared only briefly, is not materially significant, but it does represent a vital time in Corona’s history. I’m glad to have this machine in my collection.

© 2019, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Richard P May 18, 2019, 2:01 am

    I made a lucky guess! That detail just felt unusual to me.

  • T. Munk May 18, 2019, 3:30 am

    Nice! I couldn’t even make an educated guess on that one, other than it was early because only one shift key.. 😀

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