The first mechanical cash register was invented in 1879 by James Ritty after the Civil War. He owned a saloon in Dayton, Ohio and wanted to stop his employees from stealing. The first model was a Ritty Model I, which was patented in 1883. Soon after he sold the business to Jacob H. Eckert who formed the National Manufacturing Company. In 1884, he sold the company to John H. Patterson, who renamed the business to National Cash Register Company (NCR). They improved on the cash register by adding a paper roll for receipts. In 1906, the first cash register with an electric motor was designed by Charles F. Kettering. By 1911, they sold 1 million machines and had over 6,000 employees. National Cash Register sold 95% of all cash registers in 1912. They were deemed a monopoly and sued by the federal government in 1913. In 1991, they were purchased by AT&T.
Today, National Cash Register have become very collectible. The best place to buy them online is on eBay, where you can find antique National Cash Registers, parts, and many different models.
National Cash Register Serial Numbers
The serial numbers are usually found in the front of the cash register. They can be found under the indicators, in the middle of the keyboard. On machines manufactured later, they are on the strip that holds the marble.
National Cash Register Model Numbers
Some of the more popular National Cash Registers are: