|These are the two pens that got me started with fountain pens. The larger one belonged to my grandfather, James M. Strickland. It is a Hudson, which was a second or third tier manufacturer of the early 1930s, located in New York City. It is a typical early thirties pen: fat, cylindrical, flat on the ends, lever filler, standard 14K nib. It is made of bakelite and is rather fragile, as bakelite tends to shatter easily. The other is my mother's ca1950 Sheaffer Valiant TM. To me, it represents the zenith of fountain pen design in the Touchdown filler system and the Triumph conical nib. Note also the very small size compared to the Hudson. This is a TM (Thin Model) that was introduced into the Sheaffer line about 1950, replacing an earlier, somewhat fatter pen of similar design. Fountain pens seem to have gotten progressively thinner with each decade.|
|Soon after I had
the Hudson and Sheaffer pens repaired, I learned that there actually has
been one fountain pen manufacturer located in Alabama, the Artcraft
Fountain Pen Company of Birmingham. It was in business from 1920
to about 1934, first as Cromer Artcraft Fountain Pen Company, Inc., and
later as Artcraft Pen Corporation. Since I am a native of Alabama,
I thought it would be neat to have an Artcraft and I I began looking for
In the process, I came across a Ford's pen and pencil set for sale on eBay and bought it for two reasons, it strongly resembled the Artcraft pen I had seen pictured, and the President of the company was Ford Cromer. I thought that perhaps he had also made pens under his own name.
Since that first pair, I have collected four more Ford's pens, but I have not yet been able to find out who made them. I'm still looking, though.
Click the Ford's Pens button at the top of this page to see pictures of these pens.
|My daily writers,
a 1960 vintage Sheaffer Imperial and a brand-new sterling silver Laban