Historical Research Concerning

The Thompson Typecaster

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1. Introduction

Here are some more or less random notes.

2. Corporate Data

2.1. Corporate Charters

[NOTHING YET]

2.2. Commercial Directory Listings

The 1911 Chicago Printing Trades Blue Book. (Chicago: A. F. Lewis, 1911) has this entry (p. 96):

"Thompson Type Machine Co., 130 Sherman; tel. Wabash 2484. Corp. P. R. Hilton, pres.; J. S. Thompson, vice pres.; A. H. McQuilkin, sec.; A. W. Rathbun, treas. Type casting machines."

2.3. Offices, Factories, and Other Locations

[NOTHING YET]

2.4. Acquisitions

The British and Colonial Printer and Stationer (vols. 82-83 (1918); scanned by Google Books but available only in "snippet" view at present) reported that the Universal Type-Making Machine Company, purchased the Thompson Type Machine Company (makers of the Thompson Typecaster). There is a puzzle here, since the Universal Type-Making Machine Company's (Delaware) corporate charter was revoked in 1921 for failure to pay taxes for two years, yet the Thompson remained in production until whatever company was producing it was purchased by Lanston Monotype in 1929.

Machinists' Monthly Journal Vol. 41 (International Association of Machinists, 1929) p. 311 contained the following report (from the "snippet view" available through Google Books):

"PHILADELPHIA - Lanston Monotype Machine Co., 24th and Locust Sts., manufacturers of type-setting machinery, has acquired plant and business of Thompson Type Machine Co., 223 W. Erie St., Chicago, manufacturer of kindred equipment, and will consolidate ... [snippet ends here; Google digitized the UW Madison copy, so I should just go and read it.]"

The British and Colonial Printer and stationer Vol. 107 (1930): p 750 has a notice (visible to me only in part, in the "snippet" view of Google Books) of the formation of a new company, "Thompson Type Machine Co., Ltd. - Capital [GBP] 2,000 in [GBP] 2 shares to acquire from the Thompson Type Machine Corporation of Philadelphia, USA, the goodwill of its business of manufacturing ... [snippet ends]" It is curious that the date is post-1929 and the location is Philadelphia (where Lanston Monotype was based).

2.5. State Reports

[NOTHING YET]

3. Miscellaneous References

[1913] Bateman, Newton and Paul Selby, eds. Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois. Volume 2. (Chicago: Munsell Publishing Co., 1913) has a biographical entry on Acors Well Rathbun (1862-12-07 - ?) on p. 995. In this he is cited as holding the position of Treasurer for the Thompson Type Machine Company (as well as The Inland Printer and other organizations). This volume is availabl online via Google Books. Curiously, it also has a biography of John S. Thompson, but it appears not to be "our" John S. Thompson but instead the proprietor of a laundry.

[1917] In hearings on a US Senate bill on the Registration of Designs, John S. Thompson presented arguments against the bill (and against ATF). He represented himself as the General Manager of the Thompson Type Machine Company and its location as Chicago. { Registration of Designs[:] Hearings Before a Subcommittee of The Committee on Patents[,] United States Senate[,] Sixty-Fourth Congress[,] Second Session[,] on S. 6925[,] An Act Providing for the Registration of Designs (Washington: Government Printing Office, [January 24, 1917)} So John Thompson seems to have been associated with this company, in Chicago, until at least very near its acquisition by the Universal Type-Making Machine Company in 1918.


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