Monday, December 12, 2016

Cleeland's Inshuro in Cleveland

When Howard Edelstein offered me a bunch of pencils at the Ohio Show, this was one of the ones I was just itching to get home and research:


This one has a great pattern, reminiscent of something made by Cross:


The imprint at the top, however, was not something I had seen before:


“Sterling / Inshuro / Reg. U.S. Pat. Off. / Pittsburgh, PA USA.”   When I got home, I plugged “Inshuro Pittsburg” into my browser and promptly found out . . . well, I found out about as much as I think is out there.  I found an advertisement from The Pittsburgh Press on May 12, 1918, in which the “Cleeland Inshuro Pen Company” of Butler, Pennsylvania (note that the name was misspelled “Inshruo,” so thank heavens they got it right earlier in the ad) was looking for sales representatives for the Inshuro pen, “unconditionally insured for five years.”


That summer, notice was published in The India Rubber World that a trademark had been granted for “a horizontally elongated diamond with the word Inshuro within,” providing serial number 108,242 for the registration:


That made it easy to find the actual trademark reported in The Official Gazette on April 30, 1918.  The company claimed it first used the mark as of January 1, 1917:


On a hunch, I looked up “Cleeland” in American Writing Instrument Patents Vol. 2: 1911-1945, and I hit paydirt: Roy A. Cleeland applied for a design patent on June 22, 1922, and it was granted on February 5, 1924 as Design Patent number 63,874.  Best of all was that the patent was not for just any design, but for the exact design found on my example:


Roy A. Cleeland was a jeweler from Butler, Pennsylvania.  Here’s an advertisement from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette in 1914:


In September of 1922, the stationers’ press reported on the incorporation of the Inshuro Pen Company – no mention of Cleeland – by a John Hughes in Pennsylvania:



The incorporation of the new company, ironically, is the last thing I could find about it.  Well, except for maybe one other small thing:


The same month the incorporation of the new Inshuro Pen Company was announced, an advertisement ran in the Akron Beacon Journal for sales representatives for the “Inshuro Reg. U.S. Patent Office,” but the address was for the “Cleveland Inshuro Pen Company.”

Cleeland’s Inshuro, without Cleeland, in Cleveland – what are the odds?

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