Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sharpening My Understanding of the Spear

When Arthur Cox met me at the Philadelphia Pen Show with his boxes of goodies in hand, I found out just how little I actually knew about the Eagle Spear and its variations.

The most "normal" of the Spears Arthur had were these, one in black with gilt bands and the other in the more uncommon red or "russet."

Both of these are as clean as they come, with most of the gold paint still evident on the barrels:

But what really made these outstanding was the original box Arthur had to go with them, in which the black number 831 with gilt bands was originally packed!

And it got even more interesting from there. Check out these:

These yellow and purple examples with polka dots were the Number 827 "Leopard" pencils, and they also bear the Spear’s 1908 patent date. I’ll forgive a few cracks in the enamel on the yellow one – after all, where am I going to find a better one?

And then Arthur had these, which are about the same length as a Spear but much smaller in diameter:

These were the Number 530 "Butterfly":

And last but not least, there were these two identical pieces, along the same lines but with a much heavier, hexagonal barrel that feels like it might be bakelite:

Eagle liked to recycle the cool names that the company used on its products. These Number 531 "Pointers" are a good decade or two older than the Eagle Pointers that later succeeded the Chief in the early 1920s:

Note:  after this article was originally published, Dan Linn emailed me to let me know:

Leopards came in red, too!

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