Today in History: Fountain Pen patented 134 years ago

Today in History: Fountain Pen patented 134 years ago

On 12 February 1884, New York insurance salesman Lewis Waterman patented a groundbreaking invention, the fountain pen. Waterman’s instrument was a winner: it did not require constant dipping into the ink well and almost eliminated any ink spills. Writing instruments that contained their own ink supply already existed in the early 18th century. Today’s oldest surviving fountain pen was designed by the Frenchman M. Bion and dates back to 1702. The first American patent for a pen was awarded in 1809 to P. Williamson, a Baltimore shoemaker. After 1850, there was a steady stream of new fountain pen patents and pens in productions. But while early fountain pens were plagued by ink leaks and other failures that left them impractical to use and difficult to sell, it was Waterman’s patent that promoted the fountain pen to a widely popular writing instrument.

For inquiries, email posterconnection@gmail.com.

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Today in History: Ludwig Hohlwein born in 1874

Today in History: Ludwig Hohlwein born in 1874
The famous German poster artist was born 143 years ago today. Hohlwein was a trained and practicing architect. He moved to Munich in 1906 where he started to focus his talents on poster design. A self-taught graphic artist and influenced by the work of the Beggarstaff Brothers, Hohlwein showed an extraordinary talent for decorative compositions and color combinations. Breaking with Art Nouveau, he quickly became one of the leaders of the German “Plakatstil,” departing from ornaments or embellishments and simplifying the artwork through the use of form, flat colors and bold shapes.

Inquiries about this original, vintage poster at posters@posterconnection.com

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Winter Sale 2017 Today

Auction Today.

Today is the day! Don’t miss our 2017 winter poster sale. Part of the offering is this fabulous 1950s Air France poster promoting travel to South America. Reserve: $100 ! Auction starts at 10 am.  http://www.invaluable.com/catalog/6TNKLC4W8P

For inquiries, email posterconnection@gmail.com.

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Today in History: 142nd Birthday of Ludwig Hohlwein (1874-1949)

Today in History: 142nd Birthday of Ludwig Hohlwein (1874-1949)

The famous German poster artist was born on this day in 1874. Hohlwein was a trained and practicing architect. He moved to Munich in 1906 where he started to focus his talents on poster design. A self-taught graphic artist and influenced by the work of the Beggarstaff Brothers, Hohlwein showed an extraordinary talent for decorative compositions and color combinations. Breaking with Art Nouveau, he quickly became one of the leaders of the German “Plakatstil,” departing from ornaments or embellishments and simplifying the artwork through the use of form, flat colors and bold shapes.

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Today in History: The Pen

Today in History: The Pen

On June 10, 1943, Hungarian-born László Biró received the first patent for the pen. Biró was a journalist who was frustrated with the use of the fountain pen: it took too much time to refill the ink and there seemed to be no way to avoid ink smudges. Biró noticed newspaper inks seemed to dry more quickly, thus rendering the paper stain free, and so he set out to design a pen using the same type of ink. He filed a British patent in 1938 and continued to develop and improve the pen’s design together with his brother György and their friend Juan Jorge Meynin. A new patent for the improved pen was filed in 1943: it was the first real ballpoint pen as we know it today. The pen became an immediate bestseller in the United States after World War II where it was first introduced in the fall of 1945 at a New York department store. Despite its high price of $9, some 10,000 pens were sold within the first week.

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Today in History: Carl Benz gets patent for gasoline car

130 years ago today, German engineer Carl Friedrich Benz received the first patent for a gasoline-powered vehicle. Benz had begun to work on the two-stroke (or two-cycle) engine in 1878. Benz & Co. formed in 1883 and its first motor car rode through the streets of Mannheim, Germany in July of 1886.

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Today in History: First Mercedes Test Drive in 1900

115 years ago today, the first Mercedes was taken for its maiden drive in Cannstatt, Germany. The car was specially built for its buyer, Emil Jellinek, an entrepreneur with a passion for luxury cars. Jellinek had ordered cars from Daimler in the late 1890s and sold them to high society customers. But he also used them in racing events, entering them using the pseudonym “Mercedes,” the name of his elder daughter. In 1900, Jellinek entered an agreement with Daimler to sell a new line of 4-cylinder automobiles suggesting they be called Mercedes. The first Mercedes was test driven on November 22 and delivered in December of 1900. Two years later, the Mercedes brand name registered legally.

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