The Evolution of the Pen

The Evolution of the Pen

In addition to being a lover of pens, I am a big fan of smoking cigars. Once a week I meet up with friends to share a good cigar and a bourbon. We of course talk cigars, sports, and even on occasions pens.  Of course I am the one who brings up the pen discussion.  My friends have learned over time that I use them as my focus group for testing new ideas for pens. They are very receptive to the discussion as they know that if they participate in the focus group they will receive free cigars and drinks. 

On a recent occasion I brought along the latest execution of the Tycoon in black and Gold TruStone. Most loved the pen, which was a fountain execution. As one of my friends was writing his name with the pen he inquired “Hey Jim, so who invented the fountain pen?” To which I immediately replied, “Well...I did of course!”

“No seriously Jim, who invented the fountain pen...was it the Chinese?”

BUSTED!  I had to confess that I didn’t know. To my friends astonishment, I said “You know, that’s a good question...lets check with Google.”  Being the founder of a luxury brand pen, one would think I could have fielded the question with ease. 

As I was not able to answer that question, my friends took that as an opportunity to determine what else I didn’t know about pens! A game of sorts... 


So fearfully of being tested at our next gathering I brushed up on my Pen History and thought I would share with you some of the more fun aspects of the Evolution of the Pen. 

While the history of the pen would take many pages, longer than your typical blob, the follow here are a few highlights. Following are to great videos that have some really informative and fun videos that cover the complete history of the evolution of the pen. Worth the look!

Some fun facts about pens and their evaluation:

- Quill pens, not fountain pens, were still widely used in the eighteenth century, and were used to write and sign the Constitution of the United States in 1787. 

- ‘New invented' metal pens are advertised in The Times in 1792 

A metal pen point was patented in 1803, but the patent was not commercially exploited. I am thinking this person was kicking themselves a few years later!

A patent for the manufacture of metal pens was advertised for sale by Bryan Donkin in 1811. Why didn’t my great grandfather pony up the cash!

- The average Bic Cristal ballpoint can produce a line of around 2km long. That means that one single pen could draw a line over 4x longer than the height of the Empire State Building.

- On average, a pen can write approximately 45,000 words. Who counted this? 

- Pen caps cause over 100 deaths a year by people playing with the cap in their mouth and swallowing it. Fortunately no one has ever died from a Pitchman Pen!

In 95% of cases, if a person is given a new pen, the first word they write is their name.


The Evolution of the Pen white boarded!


BIC: The Company Behind the Pen video. 

This is much more than a video about the history of BIC pens, a true history lesson on the evolution of the pen. 


Hope you enjoyed the journey!