Thursday, September 9, 2010

Featured Pen - 1929 Jade Wahl Ringtop

[You can click on any of the photos to enlarge for more detail]

The following is from Pendemonium's website (if you don't know Frank and Sam at Pendemonium, you need to get to know them QUICK!)

Wahl and the Ever-Sharp Pencil Company

Eversharp Pencils - The Myth

In 1912, Tokuji Hayakawa, a Japanese businessman, invented an all metal propel type pencil named Ever-Sharp. The Ever-Sharp Pencil Company began exporting pencils to the United States in 1914. The pencil was immediately successful and in 1915, The Wahl Adding Machine Company bought controlling interest in the Ever-Sharp Pencil Company. Wahl began manufacturing Ever-Sharp pencils in Chicago in 1915. The Wahl-Eversharp propel pencils continued to be a popular item well into the 1920s.

Eversharp Pencils - The Truth

Recently discovered information dispels the story above of the Eversharp pencil being originally designed and produced in Japan. The mis-information has been generally accepted by those in the pen community for many years and has been published in several different references. One of the most fascinating aspects of fountain pen collecting is that new information is constantly surfacing. This is not the first instance of well accepted information being disproved. I would suspect that as time goes by, more old and accepted fountain pen myths will also be discovered.
The Eversharp pencil was invented by Charles Keeran in 1913. He applied for a patent to the pencil on Oct 1913 and was granted the patent in March 1915. Some of the very first Eversharp pencils were produced in New York by Heath. (Heath is known for high quality filigrees and metal work on pens) These pencils were first sold in a test market during the holiday season of 1913 at Wanamaker's in New York. In October of 1915, Keeran signed a contract with Wahl to manufacture Eversharp pencils. Wahl was apparently quite persistent in wanting to have total control of the Eversharp pencil production and in August 1917, Charles Keeran was basically forced to resign from the company. Wahl certainly was not up front over the years about sharing these historical facts!
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From an original Wahl Eversharp 1928 advertisement
Usually, when we think of the Wahl Eversharp metal pencils, we envision the basic gold filled ringtop model with chevron chasing and the accompanying dings and dents that unfortunately, metal writing instruments are subject to. Aside from the basic pencil style mentioned above, Wahl Eversharp produced metal pencils in a variety of chasing patterns and metal finishes.
We've acquired a nice little grouping of early Wahl Eversharp metal pencils that are in beautiful condition and virtually free of unattractive dings and dents. These make great little nostalgic gifts

The following pages are from the Wahl-Eversharp 1929 catalog.  Thanks to Julie over at Peaceable Writer, who also happens to be the previous owner of this pen.

This lovely little pen measures just 3-3/4" capped and 5" posted.  As such a small pen, it requires posting even for me.  It also does not hold a big ink supply, yet it is lovely to look at and a joy to write with.

  The #2 Wahl nib is fine, firm and extremely smooth, delivering a big writing pleasure in a small package.


phonelady said...

Love it looks like an awesome pen that is totally cool.

JoniB said...

I had to pull out my ruler to get the size of this pen into my head. It IS small! And I had a great grin on my face as I read the real story of Eversharp. Corporate manipulation isn't just limited to our generation, is it? Ha-ha!

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