Edel

About This Model

There were numerous minor fountain pen manufacturers in Germany, and they lasted, as a rule, longer than minor American companies. Some started in the 1800s, and others after WWI. Brause is a very old German firm, first begun in 1850 in Iserlohn as a dip pen nib manufacturer. Their production of fountain pens began in the 1950s and were almost exclusively school pens, recognized by a blue band over the cap ring. Very little is known about Edel, another such firm. Edel was a small German company that made parts for export to the Netherlands before WWII. The pens were assembled and sold in the Netherlands post-WWII, then effectively disappeared, until a large trunk full of the parts was discovered in the early 2000s, leading to more than 100 pens making it to market. Geha, shortened from Gebrüder Hartmann, was a stationery products company, in Hannover, Germany; founded just after WWI. It produced a wide range of ffice products and machines, and war materiel during WWII. Moving to new products in 1949, Geha began producing fountain pens, most of them student level. They did have two interesting innovations: an inlaid nib called a Goldschwinge, and a reserve tank below the piston. Geha became the first German company to offer cartridge-fillers, and even maintained their reserve capacity in these pens with the use of a second short cartridge. Pelikan purchased Geha in 1990. and it was folded into Pelikan by 1995. There is very little information available about Merlin fountain pens. The available information was found by Richard Binder, who noted that a small family business in Germany made the parts, which were assembled in the Netherlands for the Dutch market. After the founder's demise, the remaining inventory was sold to Andreas Lambrou and a partner, who used this as the basis to found Classic Pens Ltd in the 1990s. Binder, later, made "several hundred" Merlin 33 and Merlina pens available for sale. The noteworthy part of the Merlin story is that they were available in a huge variety of colors, at least 38. They are nice, well made, smaller pens.

About This Pen

The Edel fountain pen is a curiosity, a pen that had been mostly lost to history until a Dutch restorer took a risk and brought them back to life.  What is an Edel? It is a 1935 German piston-filled fountain pen, made of plastic (barrel and cap), Bakelite (crown and blind cap), and ebonite (section and feed). It looks like nothing as much as a contemporaneous Pelikan, the 100 series. Its nib is like no other German nib I’ve seen — amazing flexible and wet, writing from an EF to a BBB, and wet without dripping ink. It’s a handsome, shiny pen.

Its story is very interesting. In 2013, I believe, a Dutch restorer was offered the contents of an old trunk bought at auction, what appeared to be NOS pen inventory. At the bottom of the trunk was was a page of newsprint from Hamburg, 1944, but no information was found about its previous owner. The restorer disassembled them and built complete pens from the pieces. In the end, he was able to recover and build numerous pens which had not been seen before or, except for this batch, since. I responded immediately to his Fountain Pen Network post, so was able to get one. I love wartime pens, and even though this one was not designed for wartime use, it is clearly from that era. The two World Wars, in addition to everything else they did, changed the historical paths of millions of people as well as their possessions.  My Edel is one of those possessions — someone had a stationery/pen business somewhere in Germany, was an agent for Edel, who lost the inventory, only to have it reappear 70 years later.

Price: $

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