Learn about Cash Registers
The cash register was invented in 1879 by James Ritty, saloon owner in Dayton, Ohio, to keep employees from stealing from the cash drawer. In 1883, he patented a model that resembled a clock and registered amounts of money.
Soon after the patent was granted, James Ritty sold the business, and it was quickly on sold to John Patterson who renamed the company National Cash Register Company and it dominated the market for cash registers for the next 100 years, over the period diversifying into other business equipment including point-of-sale terminals, auto teller machines, cheque processing equipment, barcode scanners and small computers.
The first registers were entirely mechanical, and did not keep a record of transactions, or print receipts. The employee was required to enter every transaction, and when finished the total key was pushed, the drawer opened and a bell would ring, alerting the manager to a sale taking place.
Later improvements were a drawer to hold cash and a roll of paper to record transactions. By the early 1900s, elaborate brass cash registers were made that were works of art. more...