Family Business — The Gramercy Typewriter Company has kept NYC dancing on the keys since 1932. With a third generation at the helm, they have no plans to slow down.

“It’s always busy, it never stopped, all these years,” explains Paul Schweitzer, owner and partner at Gramercy Typewriter Company.

Founded by Paul’s father in 1932, three generations of the Schweitzer family have kept New York City’s typewriters tapping out letters, essays and novels for the last 84 years.

Gramercy serve a discerning clientele for whom clicks and pixels will never compete with clattering keys, ink ribbons and type striking paper.

While many, like Paul’s son and business partner Justin, appreciate the romance of these “gorgeous machines”, the skills to maintain their complex moving parts are slowly dying out.

The film continues our Family Business series, which celebrates people passing down skills, craft and would-be lost arts to their children and children’s children.

This niche industry would struggle to survive without people like Paul, who is sharing the expertise won over 56 years in the business to his son – but working closely with family brings its own tensions.

“Every day I’m learning something,” Justin explains. “I have to show that I’m comprehending everything he’s teaching me, or he’ll kick me out.”

Check out our first Family Business film, The Secret Recipe of London’s Blue Plaques.

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