The book was conceived five years ago when Mr. Smith was typing a poem called “The Typewriter Bird.” He made some mistakes and “finding that the XXX” ing-out looked like what I had written about. I drew the bird on the typewriter and went on from there.” he explained.
The incident occurred during hot summer in Greenwich Village where through the open windows of the apartment below the Smiths, the click-clack of a professional typist came day-and night, sounding like a wild, annoying and persistent bird pecking away somewhere in the branch of the allanthus tree. So, every day, to amuse his son David, then four, Mr. Smith added more birds people and animals.
The Smiths collected these in the booklet “Typewriter Birds” which they used as a Christmas card in 1904. The following year Mr. Smith did another group of caricatures of literary figures “Literary Birds ” for New World Writing. Out of these beginnings grew Typewriter Town”.