A Mother’s Day Note—1937 Royal Vintage Typewriter

May 8, 2012

Dear Mother,

This year in honor of Mother’s Day I have chosen to fore-go the purchase of a greeting card and rather, write a Mother’s Day note to you on this charming bit of yesteryear.

My decision is two-fold. I hope to transcend your thoughts to the past—gently bringing forth the gift of memories. Perhaps, recollections of your own Mother and the love and kind thoughts which you hold in your heart will softly revisit you.

This Vintage Royal Typewriter is from 1937—and you were a mere seven years old when this machine was born. Maybe this physical note, with the iconic font and hand-struck ink letters will aid you in remembering a time in your childhood, in the small town in Iowa, when as a child you celebrated this special holiday. I hope to bring forth wonderful memories to the doorstep of your thoughts as my gift to you.

Secondly, I offer to you the gift of my time—as miles separate us—I am spending time with you as I write. This antiquity of the past presents challenges for me, one whom has always known the convenience of much more modern machines. I most often write on a computer in these current days, granting me the ability to make instantaneous corrections while simultaneously providing me the indulgence of having my spelling and grammar checked. Having these conveniences at my disposal certainly assists me in avoiding unwanted errors and does seem to take much less time. (The dictionary is sitting on my lap.)

Not to mention—the ease of having an exclamation point at my disposal to assist in conveying the essence of excitement, rather than being limited to my vocabulary. The Royal 1937 does not have either an exclamation point or the number one (the numeral is achieved by using a lower case L.) I have yet to figure out how to create an exclamation point. I am curious if the Royal Company didn’t believe there was much to “exclaim” about in 1937, or if the world was just a calmer place—less drama, less hype and less exclaiming.

With regard to my time, which is expanding exponentially as I type, as I had hoped to present this to you without any errors. The note you now hold in your hand is my fifth attempt at that goal, so you now will see some “typed-over” letters. I have resigned myself to my best effort.

I am planning on purchasing a new reel of ribbon-ink as it seems this one has been reversed many, many times. Certain sections of the ribbon seem quite weary as the attempt to deliver a well-defined letter is honestly made. I am also planning on obtaining correction paper…do you remember that? I vividly recall the little white piece of paper which was shiny on one side and matte-chalk-white on the other side. I am certain you remember the process of holding the little paper over the word, back-spacing and then retyping the letter and watching the ink magically lift off the page, or seem to. I also remember trying very hard to not waste any space on the correction paper as I tried to utilize every possible corner of this expensive and precious commodity.

Through the years I recall you sharing with me that at various points in your working life, especially as a young woman, you spent hours sitting at a typewriter as a professional secretary. Perhaps seeing this familiar type will rekindle a memory of a co-worker or friend you had during that time and conversations you had with them.

My wish is that this little note has gently delivered you to a lovely and meandering walk- down memory lane. May these memories offer you a poignant illustration of all you have experienced and accomplished in your lifetime…including being a Mother, Grandmother, Great Grandmother and of course, a daughter.

Happy Memories on  Mother’s Day (exclamation point)

With love,

Your daughter,


Joy Surrounds!