The First Practical Typewriter Patented

Sholes and Glidden typewriterJune 23, 1868

Latham Sholes, Carlos Glidden, and Samuel Soule are awarded a patent for the “Type-Writer” which would become the basis for the first practical and commercially successful typewriter. Evolving into what would become known as the Sholes and Glidden typewriter (which would later become the Remington No. 1), one of its lasting legacies was the introduction of the QWERTY keyboard, which is still the most popular keyboard layout in the world to this day.

A popular theory states that the design of the QWERTY keyboard was intended to slow down typists in order to minimize the clashing of the typebars which would jam up the early typewriters. There is little evidence to support this theory, however, and a research study published in 2011 asserts that the QWERTY design was more directly influenced by feedback from telegraph operators who were early adopters of typewriters and found previous keyboard layouts inefficient.