Fountain Pen Restoration

Presidential Fountain Pens

Everyone who has spent time around the hobby of fountain pens and read about them has run across the question as to which (if any) fountain pens the Presidents (or other World Leaders) have used. I will not attempt to discuss Eisenhower’s Parker 51, or other favorites here. I will, however, discuss the restoration of two pens named after Presidents – Jefferson and Lincoln. Are there others? I do know that there are Monroe Pens (though I don’t know if they were named after President Monroe), but can think of no others. If you can, please feel free to comment below. I do not even know if Lincoln or Jefferson Pens were named after the Presidents. Remember my article on Franklin Pens of Philadelphia? I mistakenly thought they were named after Benjamin Franklin until research led me elsewhere.  For now, I will assume that the two Presidents shown below are the inspiration for these pens.

Abraham Lincoln, pictured on the left, was the 16th President of the United States from 1861 to 1865, and Thomas Jefferson (right) was the third President of the United States from 1801 to 1809.

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The first photo below is of a vintage Lincoln Fountain Pen after it has been taken apart.  The lower pen is the Jefferson.  As you can see, they are both in decent shape and I would guess that the Jefferson was never inked.  Both are lever fillers and the Lincoln has the hanging pressure bar, which is still in good condition.  As mentioned above, the Jefferson shows no evidence of any ink ever touching its parts.

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I thoroughly cleaned the gold furniture on both pens, including nibs, which were both large Warranted 8’s, with plenty of tipping material on them.  I did clean the outside of the Jefferson with scratch remover and polish as it is plastic.  The Lincoln, I left alone as it was quite clean, and I did not want to damage the hard rubber or mottled patterm.  The Lincoln took a size 18 sac as did the Jefferson.  Make sure to use a sac that leaves a bit of room.  You do not want to use a sac that fits too tightly in the barrel.

Below are photos of the finished pens.  The Lincoln was made by National Pen Products in Chicago.  My estimate for its production would be in the late 1920s.  I would suspect that the Jefferson was a later pen, produced in the 1930s.  I am uncertain as to who produced the Jefferson, though have read speculation that it is in the same family as Morrison/Morton pens.  Some evidence of this possibility will be discussed later.

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Note the darker ring in the plastic of the Jefferson below.  I am not certain what caused this as there was nothing in the box that might have caused this.  Perhaps there was a price ring on the pen that disappeared prior to my finding it.

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This photo shows the two “Presidential” pens together.  Measurements are as follows:

Lincoln ~  5 15/32″ capped and 6 1/2″ posted

Jefferson ~  5 15/32″ capped and 6 27/32″ posted

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The imprint on the Lincoln, which is one of the most detailed National Pen Products imprints I have seen.

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Like the rings of a tree, this is a nice addition, a ringed look to the top of the cap on the Lincoln.

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Interesting clips ~  The top is the Lincoln with the familiar National Pen Products leafy branch and flower.  You will see this clip on many of their brands.

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The Jefferson clip has a familiar wreath,  seen on many Morrison – Morton – Marathon pens.  Check out the vintage clip shot in my article No Tiers Shed Here, written on December 9, 2007 which shows similar wreath surrounding the first letter of the Pen Names.  This makes me think that the theories that I have heard about Jefferson Pens being related might be true.

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Here is a photo of the Jefferson box with the phrase ” The Gift Beautiful” on the lid.  The interior has a velvet (damaged) seat for two writing instruments. If the second was a pencil, it was missing when I found it. The logo for the Jefferson follows in the second photo. It is found on the inside of the box lid.

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These pens are not as valuable as those used by Presidents to sign treaties and legislation, but another way to collect “Presidential” pens.

June 8, 2010 Posted by | Jefferson Fountain Pens, Lincoln Fountain Pens, Morrison Fountain Pens, National Pen Products | , , , , | 1 Comment

   

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