Underwood Elliott Fisher Sundstrand Bookkeeping Machine with Stand

This machine reflects the consolidation that occurred in the American office machine business in the 1920s and 1930s. The ten-key, printing Sundstrand adding machine had its origins in the work of Rockford, Illinois, machine tool makers and inventors Oscar and David Sundstrand, who first put an adding machine on the market around 1915. In January of 1927, the assets and business of Sundstrand Corporation were acquired by the Elliott Fisher Company of New York, a maker of accounting machines. At the end of that same year, the combined firm merged with the Underwood Typewriter Company, also of New York. By 1933, Underwood Elliotr Fisher Company sold three forms of accounting machines, patterned after Underwood, Elliott Fisher and Sundstrand products.
This machine is in the Sundstrand tradition, with a ten-key adding machine at its center. It has a metal case and stand painted black. To the left of the keyboard is a column of four function keys. Left of this is a column of keys indicating years (71, 70, and 69) and types of transactions. The year keys are a different shape from the other keys. Left of this column is a column of keys for indicating days of the month and another column indicating months of the year. To the right of the number keys are a variety of function keys and levers. On the right side is an operating lever.
At the back of the machine is a wide rubber carriage on a metal frame, a printing mechanism, and a paper tape. the ribbon is on the left. There is an electric cord. A mark above the keyboard reads: UNDERWOOD ELLIOTT FISHER (/) SUNDSTRAND (/) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9. A metal tag on the right side near the base reads: 415022 (/) A114090.
The open metal stand for the machine has four rubber feet and rubber wheels. At the front of the stand is an indented space, possibley for pens and pencils. The motor is attached to the stand under the machine. Dimensions given are without stand. Dimensions of stand: 65 cm. w. x 55 cm. d. x 68.6 cm. h. A metal tag on the stand reads: 61434 (/) SUNDSTRAND.
According to the Fédération Nationale des Chambres Syndicales de la Mécanographie, serial number 293,000 of Underwood Sundstrand was produced in 1939 and number 451,000 in 1945, Hence the rough date of 1944 assigned. In 1959, Underwood was acquired by the Italian firm of Olivetti.
Fédération Nationale des Chambres Syndicales de la Mécanographie, Fédération de Reprise officielle des Machines à Ecrire, Machines à Calculer . . ., Lyon, 1970, p. 86.
Information about the mergers of Sundstrand, Elliott Fisher, and Underwood appeared in Typewriter Topics.
Currently not on view
Object Name
bookkeeping machine with stand
date made
Underwood Elliot Fisher Company
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
metal (overall material)
paper (overall material)
rubber (overall material)
overall: 33 cm x 68 cm x 54 cm; 13 in x 26 25/32 in x 21 1/4 in
place made
United States: New York, New York
ID Number
catalog number
maker number
accession number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Science & Mathematics
Bookkeeping Machines
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center


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