The WHS Self-Filler

Every now and again you come across a beauty that makes you draw your breath in sharply! This WHS pen, more than a century old and in superb condition is one such. These pens were supplied by Conway Stewart to various customers as an own-brand pen, but it is best known and most often seen as the W.H. Smith Self-Filling Pen. Conway Stewart didn’t actually make them, back in 1906, but bought them in from George Shand, a company later bought up by Jewel – such are the complications of the pen industry!

The pen is a simple syringe filler, perhaps not the best filling system ever devised, but welcome as a self-filler at a time when most pens were filled with an eyedropper. They appear with both generic warranted nibs and WHS nibs.

Just quite why or how this example survived in such perfect condition I can’t guess, but it’s as black as black can be and the patterning on the barrel is crisp and clear. Quite a wonderful accident of preservation.

3 thoughts on “The WHS Self-Filler

  1. That is a nice pen indeed. Does this pen have a name? And is the nib a “WHS” nib or a warranted nib? I have a WHS safety-filler “Eclipse” pen with a WHS nib. It is a strange pen in that part of the barrel moves back to reveal the ink sac and the metal bar which I take it had to be pressed to fill the pen. Sadly it lacks a cap.


    1. Hi Shrikaanth,
      It’s the WHS Self-Filler and it does have a WHS nib. The nib looks rather modern and I thought it might be a replacement until I checked it against picture in the Conway Stewart book.

  2. I have one of these “The WHS Self-Filler” pens. The nib has the marking “WHS” across the front, with warranted along the right side and 14ct along the left side.

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