Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ever "Sharp" Style

Here’s a trio of Eversharp-style Dur-O-Lite pencils, all of which came to me through my Ohio Show swapathon with Michael Little:

Each has some really neat features. The red one is a salesman’s sample in a really tough color pattern to find. Dur-O-Lite called it "Rain Drop Red":

The pearl example in the middle is another salesman’s sample, this one intended apparently as a giveaway:

And as for that third one, the button and slot on the side indicates that there’s something more sharp about this than eversharp:

It took about a dozen attempts to get a clear picture of the lettering hidden on that knife blade:

"Dodson Company Chicago U.S.A."  From what I can tell, the Dodson Manufacturing Company specialized in slider-type knives such as these, all of which appear to have been made in the last 1930s or early 1940s – right around the time these Dur-O-Lites were made.

And here’s another example of a Dur-O-Lite with a concealed knife blade:

"Eversharp-style" is a pretty good nickname for these, because an example identical to this one turned up in an online forum about a year ago, identified by an expert as an Eversharp. But this one is clearly all Dur-O-Lite, and the knife function on this one operates a little bit differently:

No need to remove the cap here – the blade emerges through a slot in the cap!

Postscript:   I hadn't considered that a fellow named Dodson might have patented this knife mechanism.  After this article originally published, Daniel Kirchhiemer send me an email to let me know that Richard J. Dodson applied for a patent for the Dodson pencil and knife combination on December 6, 1937, and he was granted patent number 2,141,061 on December 20, 1938:

or a pen . . .

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