I included it in the book, even though it is marked “Made in Germany,” since it’s got about as American a name as you can imagine, and it’s even got red, white and blue on there (even though they are mixed in with a very continental-looking combination of purple and orange). Besides, there’s enough of them floating around over here to lead me to believe that they were regularly marketed in the United States.
Recently I came across another Yankee, of a different sort:
This Yankee has a sliding outer barrel which telescopes over the inner barrel, with the lead fixed in place so that as the outer barrel is slid down over the inner barrel, more lead protrudes from the end. This is the same mechanism found on the Dow pencil from “The Real Housewives of Minneapolis” (see http://leadheadpencils.blogspot.com/2012/07/real-housewives-of-minneapolis.html).
I’ve known about the metal Yankee for some time – ever since Joe Nemecek allowed me to photograph his examples at the 2013 Raleigh Show, with a different camera and terrible lighting, but successfully enough that you get the idea:
These were made by the Yankee Pencil Company, 655 South Wells Street, Chicago:
Was there any connection between the Yankee Pencil Company and the German-made ones shown in The Catalogue? Until this year, I didn’t know – which is why these photographs have been languishing in the dead letter office for so long. But now, thanks to a terrific new book, I can answer that question definitively:
In the course of researching American Writing Instrument Trademarks 1870-1953, I found two trademarks for the Yankee name, both of which (along with more than 2,200 others) are included in the book. The later of the two filings matches the logo on the clips of the metal Yankees:
In addition to the information on Joe’s display card, we now know from trademark number 533,578 that this version of the Yankee logo was first used on October 18, 1947, and the President of the Yankee Pencil Company was David Collins.
The earlier filed trademark matches the logo found on the Yankee listed in The Catalogue:
Adolf Grunbaum, as President of the Export Underwriters Corporation (13 East 16th Street, New York) filed for trademark number 200,568 on February 4, 1925 - claiming to have used this version of the Yankee script since December 15, 1924.
No, there was no connection between the two Yankees.
(Note: American Writing Instrument Trademarks 1870-1953 is available at http://www.legendaryleadcompany.com/store/c2/Books_by_Jonathan_Veley.html.)