Some time ago Simon (Waudok) and I had a discussion about Kingswoods and I asked to see some of the examples he has collected. Good as his word, he sent me these pictures the other day and has kindly allowed me to reproduce them here.
These button-fillers are, I think, quite uncommon. Looking at the patterns of celluloid used, I would have little difficulty in believing that these were made by Valentine, sharing the same material they used for their own pens. I think there can be little doubt that Valentine is the source of most, if not all of these pens. That said, there are Kingswoods that are very Summit-like and share that company’s materials too. I have no doubt that the sleuthing of our dedicated researchers will, one day soon, solve the puzzle of the origins of the various Kingswoods.
These zig-zag patterned pens are outstandingly beautiful. They’re very reminiscent of Conway Stewart’s herring-bone patterns, though they employ a different celluloid.
Among the lever-fillers there are some that I haven’t seen before, notably the burgundy marble with no cap ring and the black three-ring example. It would be useful to establish a time-line for all of these pens but it’s a bit beyond me. I’d hazard a guess that the pen on the extreme right, missing its clip and with a pierced cap band, is later than the rest. It’s quite a common pen and I’ve had a few examples in different colours. Simon believes this pen was made by Unique.
There was a time, not so long ago either, it seems to me, when you could pick up Kingswoods for very little. Though they’re still by no means expensive, they have a stronger market now. Appreciation of the excellent Eversharp nib contributes to that, I have no doubt, together with the realisation that these are sound pens with a fascinating history.
My thanks to Simon for his generosity in allowing me to share these beautiful pens with you.