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1947 Esterbrook Ad

Esterbrook Nibs Advertisment

From the mid-1940s to the 60s, Esterbrook produced a huge number of their iconic “J” series of fountain pens. While Parker and Scheaffer fought for supremacy in the high-end pen world, Esterbrook made one of the most acute marketing moves of the day: take the leftovers. All of them. The result was a series of […]

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Waterman’s “Ideal” Fountain Pen Ephemera

Ephemera—the various pieces of paper that are a part of everyday life—are, by definition, disposable. In many cases (thinking of my shopping lists), that is no great loss. However, there are times when it would be more than just idle curiosity to see what is on those old papers. Being the sharing types, when we […]

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On Hide Glue

With the sheer number of adhesives peering at us from every hardware store’s shelves, it is hard to believe that most glues seen on antiques fall into only one category: animal. Hide glues were used extensively, and almost exclusively, until the mid-twentieth century, when aliphatic resin glues were developed. Even today, with a plethora of […]

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The Great Inkwell Experiment—Conclusion

The great inkwell experiment is complete! While none of the results are particularly surprising, it has definitely given us some good information and insight as to what to look for in a working inkwell. The final documentation is available here. It is a stand-alone paper, in PDF format, and includes all of the data, including […]

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The Great Inkwell Experiment Part Six—Fourth-Week Results

glass well with a simple gravity-closing hinged lid; glass well with a silver snap-close hinged lid; metal well with glass insert and a hinged outer cover (thus with space between the insert and the cover); wooden well with glass insert and an unhinged cloth-lined wooden lid; glass writing-box bottle, with threaded brass lid; pottery ink […]

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The Great Inkwell Experiment Part Five—Third-Week Results

glass well with a simple gravity-closing hinged lid; glass well with a silver snap-close hinged lid; metal well with glass insert and a hinged outer cover (thus with space between the insert and the cover); wooden well with glass insert and an unhinged cloth-lined wooden lid; glass writing-box bottle, with threaded brass lid; pottery ink […]

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