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Edison pens?


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#1 GrantC

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Posted 14 August 2006 - 23:48

Can someone give me a concise history of the Edison fountain pens? Seems to be very little out there about this brand.

Thanks!
-=[ Grant ]=-

#2 Johnny Appleseed

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 05:09

I don't know a whole lot, but Edison has a great little historical role it played.

It was a small brand located in Petersburg VA that made pens from parts supplied by other companies (which was the way they all started out - even Sheaffer, Waterman, etc.) back in the teens- 30s or so. I am not sure of the exact dates. They were fairly decent quality pens - like many 2nd tier companies at the time, but lacked the advertising budget and business strategy to make them one of the big boys.

The General Manager from approximately 1915 on was, according to an article by Michael Fultz over at PenTrace, Remmie LeRoy Arnold. He lead the company to great success, but realized it would never be able to compete with the likes of Parker, so he convinced the owners to switch to cheap pens. Then he went on to found the Arnold pen company, which turned out cheap pens by the thousands.

For more on the story - read the Fultz article - The Biggest Penmaker You Never Heard Of...

If you have been eyeing the one Joe Dinero is selling, it looks like a nice pen. If I were not way over pen budget, it would be mine.

John
So if you have a lot of ink,
You should get a Yink, I think.

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Always looking for pens by Baird-North, Charles Ingersoll, and nibs marked "CHI"

#3 GrantC

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 05:34

Thanks for the interesting info! One question: how did the choose the name? Was there anyone named Edison involved, or were they just trying to capitalize on Thomas Alva's popularity?
-=[ Grant ]=-

#4 antoniosz

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 07:54

Hi GrantC,

I can not add much to what John pointed already to.
I know Brian Anderson got a nice faceted RMHR pen recently from e-bay - maybe he can post a photo. It is interesting that although the Edison pens were apparently of high quality, the Arnolds are the cheapest of the cheapest pens (with equivalent quality).

John, I went to see if there are any patents (as usual) in the name of Edison/Arnold company. I found this one: US5207524.
The date is 1993!... Presumably Remmie L. Arnold III is the grandson of this early pioneer. Which implies that the company was active in 1993. Actually it is even active today: http://www.arnoldpen.com/ !...

So maybe GrantC if you contact Arnold Pen Co. they might be able to provide you with more information about Edison Pens. If you find anything please let us know.

Regards,

AZ

#5 Johnny Appleseed

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 15:59

According to the Fultz article, Arnold is still pumping out cheap ballpoints for the advertising trade.

Poking around over at Lion and Pen, I see a reference from David Nishimura for telescoping pens by Edison (though probably made by someone else). Link

I would also love to know more about Edison. I don't think there was any relation to Thomas Edison, but I don't know that for certain. I suspect it was the name of another Edison.

John
So if you have a lot of ink,
You should get a Yink, I think.

- Dr Suess

Always looking for pens by Baird-North, Charles Ingersoll, and nibs marked "CHI"

#6 Brian Anderson

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Posted 18 August 2006 - 04:16

I know Brian Anderson got a nice faceted RMHR pen recently from e-bay - maybe he can post a photo.

I'll try to get a better picture in a few days, but here's the current version:

Posted Image

It's a whopper of a pen, bigger than an OS Sheaffer Flat top. I love the 9 sided faceted barrel and the gold filled cap top and barrel end. Super #6 Edison nib too. I got it for a song and it won't be leaving my collection any time soon. :)

Best-
Brian
www.esterbrook.net All Esterbrook, All the Time.
Posted Image

#7 Polly Bernard

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Posted 04 November 2010 - 22:40

Edison Pen Company

219 Washington St 1910-1930s
16 N. Union St. 1940s
Petersburg Va.
Edison assembled fountain pens from parts purchased from suppliers until the 1920s when they began their own manufacturing. They produced lever fill pens and sold a telescopic gold filled pen that was identical to the one sold by the US Victor Fountain Pen Co. They sold some good quality overlays.
Remmie Arnold saved the company from bankruptcy and launched their very successful line of inexpensive pens that were sold under the Southern Fountain Pen Co name. Both Edison and southern were listed as being in business at the same time, but I think Edison was soon fazed out. The pens made by the Southern Pen Company were celluloid and appear to have been made by Wearever. I don't know if Edison ever sold any plastic pens under their own name. After making Southern a prolific pen seller, he left in 1935 to start his own company , the Arnold Pen Co.
Edison Pen Co had no relation to Thomas Edison, but Edison's son did lend his name to ink and a fountain pen called the Edison Jr. Wizard, which was made in NY.

 



#8 MidnightBlue

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Posted 06 November 2010 - 07:15

And there's another Edison Pen Co.......a new one. Brian at Edison Pen....see web site..the other one's dead,,,,,,,,I don't mean the pens........Thanks.

#9 DanDeM

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Posted 06 November 2010 - 17:54

And here's some (spurious)speculation:

http://www.fountainp...ubject-of-nibs/

#10 Vintagepens

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Posted 06 November 2010 - 18:49

"Spurious" is surely the right word!

As for the post above that states that the telescoping Edison was identical to the Victor, my experience does not agree. The two pens are similar designs, but do differ in significant ways. I have, however, seen a Salz-marked telescoping pen that was identical to the Victor, markings excepted.