Mergenthaler Linotype Model L Linecaster - 1917

Manufacturer: Mergenthaler Linotype Co., NY, USA

Model: Model L

Y.O.M: 1917

Serial No.: 2444

Acquired: 2001


German-born Ottmar Merganthaler (1854-1899) came to America in 1872 and settled in Baltimore. He worked on an idea of utilizing brass molds (matrices) to cast a line of letters, all in one machine. Through many trials and errors, finally in 1886, Mergenthaler was successful and introduced his invention to the NY Tribune who quickly saw the virtue of the revolutionary machine. Linotype revolutionized the printing industry in the late 19th century and became a mainstay in composing rooms at every newspaper, book and magazine printer worldwide.

Edison called it “the Eighth Wonder of The World”. Sadly, by the 1970’s, most of them had been decommissioned.

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