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Corona Four Keyboards 1928

The “Corona Four KEYBOARDS 1928” handbook was part of a dealer’s sales equipment, including dozens of keyboard arrangements for languages and specialty purposes. The company distinguished “type face” as the style of the font — Pica, Italic, Micro, Elite, Gothic, and Pin Point-Gothic Combination — and “keyboard” as the language or purpose.

“The salesman should point out, however, that practically any combination of characters can be made up into a special keyboard,” the document states. But, the company explains, the “salesman should use every reasonable effort to dissuade the customer from ordering unusual keyboard arrangements,” as the customer might find resale difficult.

The booklet, available here as a PDF download (57 mb), describes nearly 100 typefaces. Many of the foreign-language keyboards simply include special accents, but several display foreign characters. Several keyboards are for specialty purposes.


Japanese — containing merely the pound and yen symbols:

Kana — Japanese syllabaries that form part of the Japanese writing system:

Tokio – A keyboard for the Tokyo market? the keyboard has minor differences in arrangement from the Japanese keyboard:

Writer’s — for, well, the writer:

Chemical and Engineering keyboards — for the scientifically minded typist:

Medical — for the pharmacy and hospital:

Goodrich Rubber Co. — a company specific keyboard:

Checkwriter — for retail and banking:

Spanish — re-listed as “Mexican” on a separate page (apparently to address that specific market):

© 2020, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.

{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Bill M May 3, 2020, 2:03 pm

    I didn’t know all those existed that early. I wonder if the check writing one perforated the paper like a check writing machine. Thanks for the link to the booklet.

    • Mark Adams May 5, 2020, 4:33 pm

      Yes, I’m constantly amazed at how many arrangements were offered throughout the machine’s history.

  • T. Munk May 5, 2020, 2:10 pm

    Sweet! Odd that the Goodrich keyboard needed the numbers 11, 12 and 13 as individual keys.

    • Mark Adams May 5, 2020, 4:32 pm

      I’m glad you mentioned that. I’ve been dying to say that this one goes to 13…

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