7. 1875 Remington typewriter
Sale price on eBay: $19,228
The typewriter that comes to mind when most Americans picture one -- and they're doing so less and less -- was invented in 1868 by Christopher Latham Sholes, Carlos Glidden and Samuel W. Soule in Milwaukee, Wis. That crew sold the patent for $12,000 -- less than the cost of this one typewriter -- to investors who then struck a deal with E. Remington & Sons to produce them for the buying public.
Remington was a sewing machine producer at the time, but it managed to crank out the first Shoes and Glidden Type-Writer in 1873. Now known as the Remington No. 1 or Model 1, it was made until 1878, when it was replaced by a Model 2 that could type uppercase and lowercase letters and allow a writer to see what he or she was typing.
This model's name is the reason every similar machine after it was called a typewriter. This model is the reason we still have QWERTY keyboards to this day. This was the typewriter when it was released. There simply weren't others. Try going into a Best Buy today and ordering "the tablet." Do you realize how many hours would be consumed by the barrage of questions that followed? When you ordered "the typewriter" in 1875, people knew what you were talking about.
If none of this has made clear just how important the Model 1 was, consider that it went to the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia in 1876 to be hailed as a huge technological breakthrough. Only one other technology overshadowed it: Bell's telephone.