This is The One

by | Jun 17, 2018 | L. C. Smith | 7 comments

Mr. E knows my mind. He was the only one to guess which typewriter I selected yesterday.

An early L.C. Smith with an intact paper table decal for $45 is a good deal. What you can’t see in the photo is that everything was working, and typing just felt good. Here’s a view from the back. Yes, it needs cleaning, but note that the decals are still gold. A good sign!

As for some of the other guesses:

The 1921 Remington portable whose owner traveled to the Far East was cool, but I wouldn’t know quite what to do with a beaten-up case with fragile labels. At $99 it seemed a little expensive. Apparently others agree, because it’s been sitting in the mall for over two months.

The Underwood Crest is a rare model, but I already have one. Actually, I decided last year that I’d donate it to Urban Legend Typewriters (to raise money for WordPlay Cincy). And you know what? It has sat around in the shop longer than any other typewriter, ever. I guess I didn’t love it, and no one else does either. It is not a terrible typewriter, but none of these late Underwood portables is great, and there is something about that green color that isn’t appealing. So $52 might not have been a good investment. It was also really dirty in some parts you can’t see in the photo.

The Woodstock was priced right at $33. But that depressing gray paint … and it would have needed lots of work. I already have one of this model in black that I enjoy a lot.

Having brought my treasure home, I wasted no time in cleaning it up and equipping it with a fresh ribbon.

Now it’s for sale at Urban Legend, along with 6 other machines I’ve refurbished. (And the Crest, but it has been put in its case to wait for a time when this world is ready for it.)

Giddy up!


  1. Ted

    ahh, I suppose I also might not have gone for the Remington, since I already have a perfect Monarch variant, and rarely want duplicates. The travel labels intrigued me, though. :D

  2. Richard P

    Yeah, they are pretty wonderful. But I grabbed some photos for free and moved on. :)

  3. Nick Bodemer

    The case on the Remington could be stabilized–seal the decals on permanently. (Had it been $50…)

  4. Bill M

    Very nice typewriter. I did not read your post yesterday so I looked today after reading this one. I think I would have guessed the Remington portable or the one you picked. Already know though may have biased my guess.

    I have always liked the appearance of the Crest and similar Underwood models of the time. I do have a few other models (1950s) in the crinkle finish. None seem as substantial as early Underwood portables although they are not really bad to use. One day I may find the glossy models I like and see how they compare.

  5. Mark

    The LC is stunning, I love my #2.

  6. Kristians

    Well, actually LC was my first guess. It was standing out from the crowd. A year or so ago I missed one in very close e-bay battle. Such a beauty!


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