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The Church Typesetting Machine

Started by Mechanic, April 03, 2014, 05:42:43 AM

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The Church Typesetting Machine is a new one to me.

QuoteWilliam Church (circa 1778–1863) was an American inventor who patented a typesetting machine in 1822, generally considered the first.

While living in Boston, he patented the Church Typesetting Machine in England, consisting of a keyboard on which each key released a piece of type of the corresponding letter stored in channels in a magazine.[2]

At some time after this, he moved to Bordesley Green near Birmingham in England, presumably to promote his patent. He was a prolific inventor, taking out numerous patents for methods of button making, nail making, metal working, smelting iron, spinning and other branches of engineering. In 1824 he patented a printing machine which positioned the paper sheets more accurately
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George Finn (Mechanic)
Gold Coast

Dave Hughes

I mentioned this machine in my thesis for my City and Guilds back in 1979, it is reproduced here on Metal Type: A History of Mechanical Composition.

QuoteThe first patented composing machine was Church's Composing Machine, 1822. This machine was probably never built, but detailed plans were forwarded to the patent office.

It involved founders' type being stored in inclined channels, and released by means of a keyboard. Lines produced on this machine were completely unjustified, this being carried out by a second compositor by hand.

William Church suggested that the type matter produced on his machine be scrapped after each printing, and fresh type cast. A clockwork mechanism powered the machine, as electricity supply was virtually non-existent in 1822
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