Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 227

From Wikipedia.com: A counter pen is a pen designed to be affixed to the counter or table of an institution, such as a bank or a post office, typically by a chain, ball chain or plastic cord, making it less likely that the pen will be accidentally or purposefully removed. A 1938 issue of The Bankers Monthly describes the concept: "The pen also gives a better write than the ordinary counter pen. The ink stand cannot be stolen, for it is fastened to the counter or desk. Besides, a chain between pen and stand prevents anyone from wandering away with the pen."

Today we're featuring a vintage counter pen belonging to VPCer Stuart, who initially didn't realize who its well-known manufacturer was...

(photos courtesy of Stuart ~ please click on images to enlarge)

Stuart: "Among the desk-sets that Joe Cocker gave me, and that Christopher Robertson kindly drove over from Coquitlam, was this one, which I first thought was a no-name set. But it’s actually not!”

"I discovered while browsing Sheaffer desk-sets on eBay today that the “generic” set I have in the kitchen is actually a Sheaffer, and dates from the late 50’s, so much older than I thought! One on eBay (with a presentation plaque dated 1959) has an intact label on the bottom - mine has no label, so I didn’t bother examining the pen closely. When I did, the faint imprint revealed it’s a Canadian Sheaffer production. So the lack of a label and the different style of the pen holder and socket fooled me! Mine has a Schmidt Parker Jotter-style refill in it - when that eventually dies, I’ll put a Sheaffer one in, a new one should fit."

There's an advertisement for a set like Stuart's (minus the chain) in the 1957 Sheaffer's "Handbook for Secretaries" on the PCA website (link to handbook- see page 14). There's no model number for the set in the ad, but Stuart says the set he saw on eBay had model number D395 on its sticker.

Update: Stuart found his desk set in the 1955 Sheaffer catalog (which was uploaded after this blog post was made)! It's on the third-to-last page and it's called the "Sheaffer Fineline Ballpoint Desk Set".

Our thanks to Stuart for sharing his photos of this cool "blast from the past" with us!

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