Since the 16th century, inventors worked to create typing and printing machines. It was not until 1870 that the first commercial typewriter, the Hansen Writing Ball, was introduced. The Danish inventor, Rasmus Malling-Hansen, experimented with the placement of the letters and introduced the first machine to actually produce writing faster than by hand.

Only three years later, the first commercially successful typewriter, and from which the machine got its name, was patented in America and called the Shoels and Glidden Type-Writer (after the inventors). It was produced by E. Remington and Sons and was the first typewriter to have a QWERTY keyboard.

In 1878, the Remington No. 2 introduced the Shift Key which allowed for two symbols per key and upper and lowercase letters. Typewriters were widely used in the home and office until the intorduction of computers and word processor in the 1980s.