NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – In 1932, the late Abraham Schweitzer started Gramercy Typewriter Company, a typewriter retail and repair business.
“And here we are, all these years later, still in the typewriter business,” said his son, current owner Paul Schweitzer, a 60-year veteran of the industry.
He works alongside Gramercy Typewriter’s third generation, his son Jay Schweitzer, selling reconditioned vintage typewriters in an array of models and color schemes.
They keep spare parts in an uptown facility and even make house calls for repairs.
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According to Paul, business is booming, thanks to a renewed interest of young people in the retro machinery. Schweitzer said that in the 2000s, Gramercy Typewriter sold an average of 10 typewriters each month. In recent years, monthly sales jumped to about 60.
“From what I see and hear from our typewriter customers, they like the feel of the machine. They like to see the words hit the paper,” Paul said. “There’s no distractions when they’re working on a typewriter, no pop-ups and things that they’ll get on their computers.”
Gramercy Typewriter customer Margaret Hope has no use for a modern computer, which she compares to a car.
“When you’re typing, it’s more like the clip-clop, clip-clop of a horse, and it slows you down. It slows your breathing down. You’re back to reality, as compared to being in a car, where everything is just automatic, so you’re not even in charge,” she said.
For Schweitzer, who still carries a flip phone, the typewriter is modern enough.
“I seem to think that, whatever I’m doing, a typewriter is sufficient,” he said. “Everybody can learn to use a typewriter with a little bit of practice.”
Gramercy Typewriter Company
108 W 17th Street
New York, NY 10011
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