National Semiconductor Novus Attache Handheld Electronic Calculator

In the mid-1970s, calculator manufacturers envisioned selling calculators in combination with other aids to personal finance. This handheld electronic calculator is designed to fit in an oversized checkbook case, along with checks and space for a credit card, a pen, and a tablet of paper. This example consists of only the calculator. It has a plastic case with no back other than a circuit board, fifteen rectangular plastic keys, and a plastic display cover. Metallic-looking stickers are on the keyboard and the right edge. The calculator has ten digit keys, four arithmetic function keys (the addition key also serves as an enter key), and a clear key. The on/off switch is above the keyboard on the left. A mark to the right of it reads: Attaché. The six-digit LED display behind this automatically inserts a decimal point in front of the two rightmost digits.
The back of this part of the calculator is a green plastic circuit board. A long battery compartment on the left side has a paper sticker that reads: NOVUS Consumer Products from (/) National Semiconductor (/) Serial No. 139477 Made in U.S.A.
Prices ranged from $29.95 down to $19.96.
Compare Unitrex CB8SL (1986.098.161) and Novus Attache (1986.0988.227).
Guy Ball and Bruce Flamm, The Complete Collector’s Guide to Pocket Calculators, Tustin, CA: Wilson/Barnett, 1997, p. 108. Give date of ca. 1975.
[Advertisement], Milwaukee Journal, November 7, 1975, p. 11. Lists this calculator as on sale for $21.88.
[Advertisement], Washington Post, December 3, 1975, p. E3. Advertised at price of $29.95.
[Advertisement], Westfield [N.J.] Leader, December 4, 1975, p. 28. Advertised as “calculator in a wallet.” Calculator sells with space for checkbook, credit card, and pen. Price $29.95.
[Advertisement], Southern Illinoisan, August 9, 1976, p. 30. On sale for $19.96.
Currently not on view
Object Name
electronic calculator
date made
National Semiconductor Corporation
Physical Description
plastic (case; keys; circuit board material)
paper (stickers material)
metal (circuitry material)
overall: 1/2 in x 3 1/2 in x 6 1/2 in; 1.27 cm x 8.89 cm x 16.51 cm
place made
United States
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Computers & Business Machines
Handheld Electronic Calculators
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Handheld Electronic Calculators
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of John B. Priser

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