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Robert Messenger
Typewriter Collector and Historian. Sports historian. Writer.
Typewriter Collector and Historian. Sports historian. Writer.

Robert's posts

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The Press as Public Enemy No 1? Tell that to the Ghost of Ernie Pyle
I have no idea what Ian Farmer is up to these days. He would be 18 or 19 by now. But at age 12, in November 2010, he could have taught a future President of the United States more about the real value of the Fourth Estate, as a force devoted to the public's...

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A Curious Time
It’s 20 years today since I arrived in Canberra.
That’s by far the longest I’ve ever spent in one place. I left Greymouth when I
was 19 and for the next 30 years roamed about the place: Auckland for a few
years, Nelson, Sydney for a memorable spell, London,...

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Free Air Typewriter*
*All one has to do is post a
video of air typing online and a free air typewriter will be on its way. See image of typewriter above. No shipping cost involved (the package is small and light). Failing
that, air typewriters will be made available for sale on...

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To Dora, on Valentine's Day
DORA Written by Sydney typewriter technician Warren Ingrey I had a typewriter to repair which I bought the other day An Olivetti Dora From down Barcelona way Now this little typewriter Well, it was quite a wreck With years of gathered dust and grime She was...

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Peggy Hull, Pioneer War Correspondent
American war correspondent Peggy Hull (Henrietta Eleanor Goodnough Hull-Kinley- Deuell, 1889-1967) at her Corona 3 portable typewriter for a Newspaper Enterprise Association publicity shot taken in New York in 1925. There is a crater on Venus named for Pegg...

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The Lady with the Brightwriter Typewriter
I've used this image before, three years ago, with others - of Twiggy , Pearl Bailey and Duke Ellington* - from the 1969 Henry Wolf series advertising the Olivetti "Brightwriter" , the Studio 45 semi-portable typewriter. It was only yesterday, however, that...

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Claude Sitton's Olivetti Lettera 32: Covering the Civil Rights Movement
Claude Sitton 's Olivetti Lettera 32 portable typewriter was on display in  FBI exhibition  called " G-Men and Journalists "  at Newseum on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington DC a few years ago. Underneath it were the words, "1960s 'Laptop': This well-travel...

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The Unpalatable Truth About Trump, Turnbull and Phonegate
Above, Trump as Snoopy; below, Turnbull as a child with a Mercedes. I admit to feeling touched the other day when this comment from an anonymous American was posted on my blog: "Speaking as an American, I want to personally apologize for the recent behavior...

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Allāhu akbar! Ice cream cart at the ready for jihadi attack in the Battle of Broken Hill
V ivian Leigh Stevens ’ Corona 3
portable typewriter felt red hot from the belting it got in the literary office
of The Barrier Miner in Broken Hill,
in far western New South Wales, on New Year’s Day in 1915. The little folding Corona didn’t get a chance to...

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Works in Progress
A "working" cover design Just before Christmas I mentioned, in passing, that I had started work on a
new typewriter book. I was delighted, though somewhat taken aback, by the number of encouraging comments
and the very positive support I received from tha...
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