WW2 Signal Corps US Army Converter M209B Cipher TypeWriter
My original 1944 manual describes the machine as follows: some rust damaged cover outside of box and good movement other fuctions in machine switch on and off is breaking of one pc
Converter M-209-(*) is a cryptographic device issued by the Signal Corps for use in divisions and lower units, down to and including battalions. It may also be used by units larger than division, or by any other organization authorized by the Chief Signal Officer. The converter provides a secure and rapid method of cryptographing tactical messages, and may be operated by personnel not extensively trained in cryptography.
Converter M-209-(*) is a small, compact, hand-operated tape-printing, mechanical device designed for rapid enciphering and deciphering of tactical messages. When properly set and operated, it will encipher a plain text message of any length, automatically printing the enciphered text on a paper tape in 5-letter groups; or it will decipher a message that has been previously cryptographed by another Converter M-209-(*), printing the clear text on a paper tape with proper spacing between words.( no paper on machine -> check ebay photo)
According to its dataplate, my machine was made by Smith Corona, with a 1944 contract date. It appears to have been very lightly used, and I question whether it was even used before being released as surplus. I’m certainly not complaining… my M-209-B is in perfect rust condition, with very little visible wear, and it is fully operational
Now, here is the converter outside of its canvas bag. The dataplate on the top of the outer lid includes the model number serial number, manufacturer’s code (CACH = L. C. Smith-Corona Typewriters), and contract number.