The Swiss-made Hermes 3000, introduced in 1958 and noted for its simplicity and ease of maintenance, was favoured by a great many writers, but none it would seem have been so faithful than the best-selling American writer and bookseller, Larry McMurtry.
A pair sold for $30,000 (£24,690) by Heritage (25% buyer’s premium) were those that he used to write, among other works, his multi-award winning novel of 1985, Lonesome Dove, the tale of a cattle drive and a very long and “genre-defining opus [that] reinvigorated the western literature scene”.
One machine he kept at his Archer City home in Texas, the other in Washington DC.
Most writers have long since succumbed to the easyto- correct, change, file, duplicate and dispatch options that came with the computer age, but McMurtry has stayed loyal to Hermes. A writer whose numerous other successes include The Last Picture Show and Terms of Endearment, he continues to produce five pages a day on his typewriter, to avoid “the empty well”.
• Mark Twain’s old ‘stagecoach trunk’, the subject of a recent ATG website story, was part of the same New York auction and sold at the starting bid price of $25,000 (£20,575).