The White Blackbird

Le Merle Blanc was part of Mabie Todd’s export drive beginning in the mid-twenties and it was aimed at Belgium, France and Switzerland. This MHR vest pocket pen was part of the earliest range. Later pens were in marbled celluloid.

At 11.2cm capped but with the girth of a full-size pen, this was a neat and convenient note-taker for the man on the move. I expect that there would also have been a a ring-top.

I understand that the export pens had 18ct nibs. If that is so, this 14ct Blackbird nib is a replacement but it isn’t entirely inappropriate as the Merle Blanc was based on the Blackbird.

The barrel imprint explains it all: Le Merle Blanc Made by “Swan” Pen People Fabrique en Angleterre. This handsome little pen is very uncommon nowadays, especially in mottled hard rubber.

The White Blackbird? Nope. It doesn’t make any sense to me either.


7 thoughts on “The White Blackbird

  1. This reminds me of how Conway Stewart had the “Le Tigre” series of pens for the Benelux countries, though I think they came much later.

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