Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Then What About This One?

When Harry P. Fairchild and Ephraim S. Johnson, Jr. ended the partnership known as Fairchild & Johnson in 1905, the firm was renamed Fairchild & Co. and the J was dropped from the F/J shield hallmark.

In my experience, these last Fairchilds are the hardest to find - according to David Nishimura’s article, the company limped along until 1927, but was not nearly as prolific as it had been in previous incarnations.

When I did finally find an example, I noted a couple things:

First, I was surprised how small the pencil was when it arrived – only four inches or so long.  I was expecting something larger, since it looks and operates so much like one of the Hicks/Edward Todd/Cartier/Louis Tamis family of nose-drive pencils.  William S. Hicks was the patentee for the design, which was issued in 1918.  This Fairchild bears no indication of a patent or a patent application pending – but then again, neither do most of these, including this Edward Todd:

In fact, take a closer look a the clip on that Fairchild.  I wonder if the clip was the inspiration for, or was inspired by, Edward Todd’s take on the upturned clip . . .

In the meantime, another example of this pencil surfaced in the hands of Brian McQueen, who sent it to me for a family picture:

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