Thursday, December 2, 2010

Old Ink in a New Pen

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

This pen is the Faber Castell E-Motion in dark brown pearwood.  I have several writing instruments made by Faber Castell but this is the first fountain pen by them.

From the Faber Castell website (please click the link to read more on the company's lengthy history):

This story tells about how the world’s oldest and largest manufacturer of wood-cased pencils came to the USA to establish a presence in the marketplace.
In 1761, a cabinet-maker named Caspar Faber started a small pencil company in Stein near Nuremberg,Germany.  The business grew under his son Anton Wilhelm Faber, but the next generation was not so successful.  Georg Leonhardt Faber had to contend with the fact that German pencils did not have a good reputation, along with tariffs and restrictions that did not encourage trade between European communities. 
In 1839, Lothar von Faber, a fourth generation family member, took over the small pencil business.  Having been sent abroad to England and France by his father after completing school and apprenticeships in banking and the stationery business, Lothar quickly realized that quality products were crucial to the success of the family business.  Lothar’s travels were cut short by the death of his father, which required his return to Stein to run the business.
Setting the Standards
Lothar proved to be a businessman full of drive and focus.  Through hard work, inventive product enhancements, and innovative marketing, he positioned the A.W. Faber line as the world’s first branded pencils.  Faber product innovations included developing a hexagonal shape pencil to prevent it from rolling, plus Lothar invented a system to designate the hardness of lead.  Eventually other manufacturers in the industry adopted this system.

I did not go out with the intention of buying this pen, but when I came across it in a local paper store for 40% off, I could resist.  So far I do not regret the decision.

This vintage Carter's ink was acquired from Pendemonium during one of their Midnight Madness sales.  If you have not yet signed up to receive notification of these sales you really need to sign up, you just never know what you might be able to grab.  My last fist pumping purchase was a full bottle of Sheaffer Skrip King's Gold Ink - yummy!!

The lovely vintage bottle...

From Wikipedia:
The William Carter Company, the forerunner of Carter's Ink, was founded in 1858 by Boston stationer, William Carter who, in order to supplement his paper sales, had started repackaging other companies' inks and selling them under his own name. In 1860, William Carter's brother, Edward Carter, joined the company and the firm became known as "William Carter and Bro."
The Civil War disrupted Carter's primary ink supplier, so William Carter obtained the use of its formulas on a royalty basis and started making his own inks and mucilage, which necessitated the move to a larger building. Another brother, John H. Carter, joined the company, which became "William Carter Bros."
In 1865 William's cousin, John W. Carter, joined the enterprise and the name became "Carter Bros. Company." John W. Carter focused his efforts on the ink part of the business which, along with the sales efforts of James P. Dinsmore, resulted in such growth that the ink business was separated from the paper business and moved into its own quarters in 1868." The entire firm and both of its divisions and their separate buildings were destroyed the night of November 9, 1872, in what has been called the Great Boston Fire of 1872. All that was left was the company's good will and its formulas.
After the fire in 1872, John W. Carter teamed up with James P. Dinsmore to buy the ink division and start a new firm known as "Carter, Dinsmore and Company." The new company thrived and by 1884 had become the largest ink producer in the world. Contributing to this growth was John W. Carter's belief in and commitment to research to develop new and better inks.
James P. Dinsmore retired in 1888, and John W. Carter drowned in 1895, which created an organizational crisis in the unincorporated enterprise, which led to its incorporation later that year as "The Carter's Ink Company.

Richard B. Carter was still studying at Harvard, but after his graduation in 1898, he joined the company and after a period of learning the business became its head in 1903. Under Richard Carter's leadership the company outgrew its Boston location and in 1909 a new factory was built in Cambridge and occupied in 1910. The building's huge "Carter's Inks" electric sign faced the Charles River and was an area landmark for many years. Richard Carter continued his father's commitment to research and development of inks, glues and related products.
In the 1920s, when upmarket writing were a popular luxury item, Carter began its range of pens. The line was discontinued in the early 1930s, but they are still fondly remembered and sought after by collectors.
Samuel D. Wonders was elected president of the company in 1949 and served intil 1955.
In 1975 the company was sold to Dennison Manufacturing Company, now
Samuel D. Wonders was followed by Nathan C. Hubley, Jr who retired as President in 1976 when the company was sold to Dennison. To help with the transition, he remained with Dennison as Vice President until 1977.
After acquiring Carter's Ink Company in 1975, Dennison made the business decision to trash all of Carter's records from the 1860s on. Among the things destroyed unfortunately were all of Carter's meticulous ink research records. The Carter name is still used by Avery-Dennison on some ink-related products such as stamp pads. The Carter's Ink building in Cambridge still stands but has been adapted to other uses.

Interesting, I have two Carter's stamp pads on my desk.  Too bad they didn't think to save the information on the ink.

...and it's almost half full!

1 comment:

Amelia Davis said...

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