“Father of the typewriter” was a Michigander who forever changed the way we communicate

Jun 20, 2018

William Austin Burton, was a Michigan resident and the "Father of the Typewriter." He created the typographer in 1829.
Credit Michigan History Magazine, Vol. 6, 1922 / Michigan History Center

You probably know the basics of how a typewriter works – even if you have never used one. What you may not have known, however, is that the “father of the typewriter” was William Austin Burt, from Macomb County.

As it happens, this Saturday is National Typewriter Day. Stateside invited Mark Harvey, state archivist with the Michigan History Center, to talk about what led to the birth of the typewriter. 

Listen above to hear about how the typewriter came to be, and to learn about the inventor who revolutionized the way we transcribe things today.

This segment is produced in partnership with the Michigan History Center

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