The Catalogue doesn’t say much about Victorian pencils, and Joe Nemecek likes it that way. On the few occasions when I’ve ventured thoughts about Victorian pencils here, I’ll usually get an email from Joe saying, "Hey, I’m supposed to be the Victorian Guy!"
I agree. He is. And this year at the DC Supershow, Joe displayed his collection. Here he is, carefully removing each one of his more than 350 examples from their individual little velvet pouches:
When he was finished setting up, each of the large display cases were filled to the brim with a wide variety of tiny Victorians:
It would be impossible to photograph all these and do it justice. for now, here's shots of each of the cases:
Don't try to ask Joe which one is his favorite or why. He will pick up each and every one in turn, explain why that one is the best and give you a list of reasons why that one is the best thing since sliced bread. And no, I checked . . . none of these slices bread!
It was hard during the heat of the action to get even these few pictures, since he had a steady stream of curious onlookers to whom he was extolling the virtues. However, during one rare lull, I was able to catch him at relative ease (even if a bit frazzled):
Not one of these pieces is for sale. Each will find its own home in its own black velvet pouch for the trip home. Not just Joe's home, mind you, but their home. After all, with Joe is where each and every one of these pencils belongs!