Last week brought about some unexpected news, and no, it wasn’t with regard to the hottest new pen out of Hannover. Rather, it was notice that a new book was coming to market. Authored by Michael Silbermann, the book is called Pelikan Limited & Special Editions: Fine Writing Instruments 1993-2020. This hardcover edition contains 280 full color pages and is being published by Leuenhagen & Paris, the same outfit that was responsible for publishing Pelikan – The Brand by Detmar Schäfer back in 2013. Each copy will be bilingual, containing German and English versions of the text, just as we have seen with both prior editions of Pelikan Schreibgeräte. The book’s official release date was 5/1/2021 and it is expected to hit store shelves next month, with retail pricing of $80 in the United States and 99.90€ inkl. MwSt in Germany. Read on to learn about what you might expect to find within the text as well as some background on the book’s author.Continue reading
Am Beispiel Günther Wagner – Pelikan
by Heinz Rings
Görres-Druckerei und Verlag GmbH, Neuwied, 2015, 292 pages
A great new book about Pelikan has become available and I wanted to highlight it now that I’ve completed my first read through. Published last year, the title of this book roughly 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. You learn in the first few pages that Mr. Rings is an expert in the advertising history of Germany and has been collecting ephemera for decades. Deutsche Werbegeschichte takes a look at how Pelikan’s advertising evolved from 1880 through the year 2000. The book is available in an unassuming plain blue hard cover and is written in both German and English with translation provided by Tamara E. Koch. Work on this volume began in 1997 and has taken many years to come to fruition. This is perhaps the most extensive catalogue of the brand’s advertising across a wide variety of mediums that one could hope to find available today.
Pelikan Schreibgeräte 1929 – 2004
by Jürgen Dittmer & Martin Lehmann
A.H.F. Dunkmann GmbH & Co. KG, 2004, 188 pages (ASIN B004G8HQY0)
Pelikan Schreibgeräte is a book that was last printed 10 years ago. It is very hard to find in today’s market and when a copy is found for sale, it often commands prices upwards of $250+ dollars. Why then review it now? While many people save and search for their grail pen (a dream pen that often borders on unobtainable), my grail has always been Schreibgeräte. Don’t get me wrong, as far as pens go, a Pelikan Toledo would be my grail but, believe it or not, the Toledo is likely more obtainable than this now long out of print book.
The book detailed here is the second and last edition to be printed, covering pens from 1929-2004. The first edition was published in 1997 and covered pens produced from 1929-1997. Both editions were authored by Jürgen Dittmer and Martin Lehmann. Schreibgeräte is the German word for ‘writing instruments’ and anyone serious about collecting Pelikan writing instruments, especially those prized vintage models, should seriously consider finding a copy of this book. It would not be an exaggeration to describe it as an indispensable resource.
In the interval since the first printing, Dittmer and Lehmann undertook to provide more extensive information on the different models as well as include more pictures of the various pens described. The book itself is a survey of models from 1929 to 2o04 and, while not an encyclopedic catalogue, it often gives information on special and limited editions that is not readily available elsewhere. Not only are Pelikan’s writing instruments detailed but so is a thorough history of the company. All of this was made possible by having unlimited access to the Pelikan archives in Hannover as well as through the help of many Pelikan collectors who are well-known across the globe.
Pelikan – The Brand
by Dr. Detmar Schäfer
Leuenhagen & Paris, 2013, 167 pages (ISBN 978-923976-91-1)
“Pelikan The Brand” is a book that was published in 2o13 in order to document and relate the development of Pelikan’s brand over the decades. It was released in time to commemorate their 175th anniversary. The Pelikan logo is very distinctive and captivating. Collectors have often puzzled over the differences in the number of chicks in the mother pelican’s nest and what the significance of one versus two versus four might mean. While this information has previously been scattered and difficult to find, “Pelikan The Brand” brings it all together in a 167 page hardbound book that is an easy and informative read.
Included in the book are letters from Pelikan’s archives that had previously been unreleased as well as an extensive collection of illustrations from many renowned artists according to Pelikan. These include Kurt Schwitters, El Lissitzky, Wilhelm Wagenfeld, and O.H.W. Hadank. The book instantly opens with a pictorial of how the Pelikan logo developed over time from the Wagner family coat of arms to the trademark that has been in current use since 2oo3. There are details of the company’s history as well as at least 150+ illustrations. The book is beautifully laid out and is a very easy read. It is written in the English language exclusively whereas other publications (i.e. Pelikan Schreibgerate) have been written in both English and German within the same publication.