Commodore GL-987R Handheld Electronic Calculator

This handheld electronic calculator has an array of twenty-three oval plastic keys. These include ten digit keys, a decimal point key, four arithmetic function keys, a total key, a clear key, and exchange key, four memory keys, and a percentage key. The on/off switch is to the right of the top keys.Text below the keyboard reads: commodore. Text below eight-digit green fluorescent display reads: CUSTOM (/) GREEN LINE. Above the display are lights for indicating when the memory is on and when the battery needs recharging. Text above these reads: GL 987R. An outlet for a power adapter is on the right side of the calculator.
Text on a sticker on the back cover reads in part: MODEL GL987R (/) Rechargeable Electronic Calculator. It includes explanation of the function keys. Additional text reads: Serial No. (/) 16342. Further text reads: Commodore Business Machines (/) Made in Japan.
The calculator has a black plastic sleeve with a metal snap.
Compare 1986.0988.127.
Guy Ball and Bruce Flamm, The Complete Collector’s Guide to Pocket Calculators, Tustin, CA: Wilson/Barnett, 1997, p. 57.
Chicago Tribune, November 30, 1975, p. 17. Advertised as on sale for $18.99. Original price $29.88. Eight-digit green fluorescent display.
Los Angeles Times, February 17, 1975, p. A10. “Price is the first problem out calculators solve for you.” GL987R advertised as on sale for $49.95.
Currently not on view
Object Name
electronic calculator
date made
ca 1975
Commodore Business Machines, Inc.
Physical Description
plastic (case; keys; sleeve material)
metal (circuitry; trim material)
glass (tube material)
overall: 1 in x 2 7/8 in x 5 1/2 in; 2.54 cm x 7.3025 cm x 13.97 cm
place made
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Handheld Electronic Calculators
Computers & Business Machines
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center


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