Over the years, Pelikan has made available their archives to facilitate the research and development of several books about the brand, its history, writing instruments, advertising, etc. These publications have been rather limited in number and were made in relatively small runs, sometimes of just a few thousand copies. The net effect of this is that while these are great tomes of information, they are often times incredibly hard to find and command a significant price when encountered for sale.
By Pelikan AG
1988 (Hard Cover) – German/English/French/Spanish
ISBN-13: None | 128 pages
A special edition catalog to celebrate the company’s 150th anniversary in 1988. Sections included for •Typewriting, •Copying and projection, •Stamping, marking, sealing and glueing, •Correcting, writing and drawing, •Writing instruments, •School and kindergarden, and •Hobby and leisure time.
Writing Instruments 1929-1997
By Jürgen Dittmer and Martin Lehmann
1998 (Hard Cover) – German/English
ISBN-13: 978-3909485888 | 133 pages
This book gives a comprehensive survey of the pens manufactured by Pelikan from 1929 to 1997. In addition to pens, there is information on the company’s history, brand development, and other products such as inks. Long considered to be an indispensable resource for the Pelikan collector.
Writing Instruments 1929-2004
By Jürgen Dittmer and Martin Lehmann
2004 (Hard Cover) – German/English
ASIN: B004G8HQY0 | 188 pages
This book is a second edition and, similar to the first, it gives a comprehensive survey of the pens manufactured by Pelikan from 1929 to 2004. This is a very different volume than the first though and both volumes should be read for a more complete understanding. In addition to pens, there is information on the company’s history, brand development, and other products such as inks. Reportedly limited to just 2000 copies produced.
Ein Unternehmen Schreibt Geschichte (A Company Makes History)
By Kathleen Allner, Thomas Schwark, and Jürgen Dittmer
2008 (Hard Cover) – German Only
ISBN-13: 978-3910073319 | 136 pages
A special exhibition of Pelikan’s history opened in the Historical Museum of Hanover, Germany on February 20, 2008 and ran through July 13th. This was part of a year long effort on the company’s behalf to commemorate the 170th anniversary of the brand. A book about the history of the Pelikan company along with product info and excellent photographs/illustrations was released alongside this event. Always of interest, depictions of some of Pelikan’s earliest adverting posters are included. Unfortunately, it is only written in the German language which limits its audience but it remains a nice resource.
The Brand (How the baby bird got into the nest, and how many)
By Detmar Schäfer
2013 (Hard Cover) – English
ISBN-13: 978-3923976911 | 168 pages
Pelikan – The Brand was released as Pelikan was celebrating its 175th anniversary. The book marks the occasion by tracing the development of the Pelikan trademark and brand from its inception. There are a great many high-resolution advertisements and historical documents depicted, some of which were previously unknown.
Am Beispiel Günther Wagner – Pelikan
By Heinz Rings
2015 (Hard Cover) – German/English
ISBN-13: None | 292 pages
The title of this book translates to “History of German Advertising by the Example of Günther Wagner – Pelikan.” This tome is 292 pages with 600 sensational illustrations of Pelikan ephemera taken from Mr. Rings’ collection as well as Pelikan’s own archives. Deutsche Werbegeschichte takes a look at Pelikan’s advertising history from 1880 through the year 2000. The book is available in hard cover and is written in both German and English with translation provided by Tamara E. Koch. Published in 2015, Heinz Rings has clearly outdone himself, providing an extensive catalogue of advertising over the years in print and other media. To the best of my knowledge, it is currently only available for purchase from the author via German eBay (seller: Pelikaner2).
Tinte Und Blech
Eine Pilotstudie zu Fritz Beindorff (1860-1944) und den Günther Wagner Pelikan-Werken im Nationalsozialismus
By Annemone Christians
2018 (Hard Cover) – German
ISBN-13: 978-3-945497-06-7 | 120 pages
In 2014, the city of Hannover established an advisory board made up of historians and researchers tasked with investigating whether or not there was active participation in the Nazi regime or serious personal acts against humanity by people who had streets named after them, in this case Fritz Beindorff Allee which was dedicated in 1931. Fritz Beindorff was one of Pelikan’s patriarchs who helped turn the company into a world-class brand. Unfortunately, World War II brought with it many atrocities and Pelikan it seems was not spared. In defense of their patriarch and in an effort to better clarify Fritz Beindorff’s role in Germany’s National Socialist period, Pelikan commissioned a research project which was undertaken by Dr. Annemone Christians of the Munich Institute for Contemporary History. She systematically investigated Mr. Beindorff’s involvement with the Reich which culminated in the publication of “Tinte Und Blech” in 2018. The text is 120 pages and includes extensive contemporary photographs and documents that are not frequently seen. The book is hardcover but in German only. Still, an excellent read well worth owning.
Pelikan Limited & Special Editions: Fine Writing Instruments 1993-2020
By Michael Silbermann
2021 (Hard Cover) – German/English
ISBN-13: 978-3-945497-13-5 | 280 pages
This book details most of Pelikan’s limited and special edition releases spanning a 27 year period ranging from 1993-2020. There are 280 pages with countless illustrations of the various models organized both chronologically and by series. The pens are easy to reference thanks to an index and there are additional portions of the book dedicated to the company’s history, manufacturing, inks, and pen maintenance. The book is available in hard cover and is written in both German and English. This work was published in 2021 and makes for an excellent coffee table book as it is heavy on images and light on text.