Burge, Warren and Ridgley may sound like a partnership of shady lawyers but in fact they were one of the pioneers of British fountain pen making. They’re largely forgotten today because they ceased to trade in 1929 but at one time they had a wide range of fountain pens and stylos on offer.
Perhaps best known was their Neptune fountain pen which started life in 1892 as an eyedropper filler, was repeatedly improved and became a lever-filler in 1922. The version above is an eyedropper, No 210. I don’t have a production date but the style suggests that it was made between 1912 and 1920.
The high-shouldered Burge, Warren and Ridgley nib is a beauty and it has notable flexibility, too.
BW&R was probably taken over by the Jewel Pen Company and disappeared except for a period during World War II when the company’s name was used to obtain a pen manufacturing license from the government – just a ploy to increase output, probably.
Never especially innovative, the company nonetheless produced some unusual colours in hard rubber, terracotta, sage green and purple among them. Much as I would like to find a purple Neptune, I’m happy to settle for this black chased hard rubber No 210. They don’t appear all that often.