Odell Typewriter Company, Chicago, 1890 – no serial number

Photo of the Odell 2 typewriter from above.
The exquisite nickel-plated Odell 2 typewriter has a beautiful Art Nouveau design cast into its base.

Model 2 has a shift lever in place for upper and lowercase characters and a bell for signalling that the right hand margin is about to be reached. The shift lever can be seen just below the letter ‘T’.

This typewriter became very popular due to its beauty, portability, and price of only $20 compared to $60 to $100 for a keyboard typewriter. Models 2 through 5 were manufactured and sold very well until around 1906, when the full keyboard typewriters became the obvious choice for full efficiency and the Odell along with the other index typewriters ceased being made.

The advertisement below makes the risky claim of offering $1,000 “To any operator who can equal the work of the Double Case Odell on a keyboard typewriter.”

“Like a printing press, it produces sharp, clean, legible manuscripts.”

“Any intelligent person can become a operator in two days.”