Charles E. Tilton patented his machine in 1889 (see here), but little came of his effort. According to The Practical Phonographer, the design was not overly impressive:
“The inventor’s claim of ease and rapidity of operation, we think, will hardly be sustained. The content repetition of the same movement must very soon wear out the hand and finger employed, and the fork can probably be jerked around no more ‘rapidly’ than can the stylus of a Hall type-writer. Too much attention is required in the selection of the letters, and too monotonous a labor put upon a single set of muscles, for the operation to be either easy or rapid.”
Typists and trade journals disputed the speed claims of index typewriters, noting that such machines were “d-r-e-a-d-f-u-l-l-y slow” (see here).
Robert Messenger writes further about Tilton’s invention here.
The Practical Phonographer (Chicago), November 1884 –
Tilton patented his machine in 1889: see here.
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