Hammond Multiplex Typewriter

This Hammond Multiplex typewriter was manufactured by the Hammond Typewriter Company of New York beginning in 1913. The typewriter uses Hammond’s patented type-shuttle and hammer typing mechanism. The type shuttle is a curved piece of rubber/metal that rotates when the key is pressed to bring up the correct character. The printing is done by a hammer in the back of the machine striking the type-shuttle in the front of the machine, with the paper and ink ribbon in between to receive the impression. The typewriter is called a Multiplex because the typewriter contains two type shuttles in its central “turret” that can easily be rotated into use, allowing the typing of two complete alphabets in different typesets on each machine. The keyboard is in a three row QWERTY array.
James Bartlett Hammond filed patents for his type-shuttle and hammer typing mechanism present in Hammond typewriters in 1879, receiving patent number 224088 on February 3rd, 1880 and patent number 232402 September 21st, 1880. The Hammond Typewriter Company was founded in 1880, and produced its first machine by 1884, winning a gold medal at the New Orleans Centennial Exposition that same year. The Hammond Typewriter touted its superior strength and durability due to its unique type-shuttle and hammer typing mechanism. The replaceable type-shuttle also contributed to the Hammond’s popularity with the ability to print in a variety of typesets in various sizes, including math formulae, special symbols, and foreign characters with an easy replacement of the type shuttle, or an even simpler rotation of a wheel in the Hammond Multiplex.
Currently not on view
overall: 7 1/2 in x 13 in x 13 1/4 in; 19.05 cm x 33.02 cm x 33.655 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Edith R. Meggers
See more items in
Work and Industry: Mechanisms
Computers & Business Machines
Data Source
National Museum of American History


Add a comment about this object