The Dickinson Croxley


As you will see from my earlier speculations in this blog, it took a long while before I was able to get an overall picture of the Dickinson’s Croxley range of pens.  Indeed, it was only when Stephen Hull’s The English Fountain Pen Industry 1875 – 1975 came out that the mystery was fully solved.  In a way, this substituted one mystery for another.  Why, one must ask, did Dickinson discontinue production of the Croxley after such a short time when the level of sales must have been gratifyingly high.  Considering that the company was in business for only a couple of years, the number of Croxleys around is phenomenal.
The earliest Croxley I have seen was a very plain pen with a smooth ball-ended clip and an unexceptional lever.  The next model is the one we’re all familiar with, with its angular stylised arrow-shaped clip and lever.  This model remained in production until the end of the company though the pen was constantly modified.  You’ll notice that the grey Croxley has a much shallower clip screw than the red one, which I believe to be earlier.  The length of these clip screws which also form the inner cap varies considerably too.  A streamlined pen and one with a silver cap were introduced in 1948.

Considering the huge number of Croxleys that had been sold, it is difficult to understand the decision to cease production but it was brought to an end in mid-1949.  It has been suggested that Dickinson chose to kill the Croxley off because it had a dated filling system and no replacement system was available.  The “dated” filling system doesn’t seem to have affected sales in the previous two years.  In any case, does any system that successfully fills a pen with ink ever become dated, except, perhaps, in the eyes of the advertising man who wants to sell you his latest gimcrack novelty?


7 thoughts on “The Dickinson Croxley

  1. Deborah,

    There is also a later Croxley model which looks much more streamlined, like the Mentmore Paramount pens, and was probably made by them for Dickinson.

    It is also a lever fill, so my guess is that the Lang’s equipment was pretty worn out when they bought it and now required major capital investment to continue production so they went back to bought in pens.

    Still smarting at some of the pens you out bid me on!

    Regards, Peter

    1. Peter,

      Yes, I mentioned the streamlined pen in my blog entry.

      As regards the pens I’ve done you out of, I think you just need to bid a bit higher. In any case, you’ve done pretty well getting excellent pens from me in ebay at rock-bottom prices!

  2. Deborah,

    Alas I only bid what I think the pen is worth to me, otherwise I would be contributing to the pen inflation you were talking about previously. Sometimes Fortune smiles on me (when you are not around or are selling the pen) and nobody else is interested in which case the market lets me have the pen at rock bottom prices. But mostly I pay the same inflating prices as everyone else.

    Regards, Peter

    1. I’m the same, Peter. I bid what I think is a realistic price for each pen. I only bid once per pen. At, say, £35.00 it’s a treasure to me. At £36.00 it has ceased to exist. If I don’t win the auction I forget it. I don’t grumble about it afterwards.

      The prices are inflating hugely. For a time I thought this price escalation was a temporary phenomenon. Not any more.

    1. Hi Mario,
      Good to see you here again.

      I don’t subscribe to FPN so I’ll answer you here.

      Dickinson only made Croxleys, nothing else. The Dickinson nib is a replacement, the original being gold. The clip may be a replacement too. Check underneath the clip for traces of gold – some Mentmore products just had a gold wash which wore away quickly. Paramount is a Mentmore sub-brand. Is it worth repairing? Yes, I think so, on the grounds of comparative rarity, if nothing else. There aren’t many Paramounts around. The answer to Uncle Red who is surprised that no-one from Britain has chimed in is that most of us left when Wim began behaving like a tinpot dictator. Queries about British pens are best addressed to Fountain Pen Board these days.
      Best Regards,

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