Another great book by Stephen Hull on another great British pen – The Swan Pen.
The American company Mabie Todd & Co. began producing dip pens and mechanical pencils in New York City in the 1840s. Gold nibs were added to the line through an association with Bard Brothers. Mabie Todd & Bard (as the firm was then known) took out its first fountain pen patent in 1878, and over the next decades its constant innovation put it at the forefront of quality fountain pen manufacture. Export to the UK began early, and a London office was opened in 1884. Manufacture of pens in the UK began around 1909, and by 1915 the UK side of the business had become so dominant that it bought out the original New York firm.
In 400 pages and 140 sections over 12 chapters and several Appendices, this book contains a huge amount of hitherto unpublished material and details, in chronological order, the development of Mabie Todd’s involvement in fountain pens in England, through the introduction of the famous Swan in 1887, the ‘golden years’ of the 1920s and 1930s, to the demise (in Great Britain) in 1958. Along the way, there have been many important milestones, not least the repercussions of both world wars, the introduction of the ground-breaking Swan Leverless, the conversion to a public company and the acquisition by Biro Pens.
There are over 1,100 full-colour photos (most at actual size) of pens, pencils and ink pencils and hundreds of images of other items, including adverts, leaflets, price lists and photographs of the factories, offices and important personnel.
This is a hardcover.