George Safford Parker and Parker Pen Company
George Safford Parker was born in Shullsburg, Wisconsin, USA on November 1, 1863. and died in Chicago, Illinois, the USA on July 19, 1937. He was an industrialist and inventor. He graduated from Upper Iowa University in Fayette, Iowa, USA. Parker’s job was a telegraphy instructor in Janesville, in his home state of Wisconsin. His side job was repairing and selling fountain pens. Parker also worked as a sales agent for John Holland Gold Pen Company. Because of the unreliability of those pens, he was searching for ways to stop ink leaking. There is a high school in Janesville that was named George S. Parker High School in his honor.
George Parker was the founder of the Pen Parker Company in 1888. In the year 1889, he got hit first patent for a fountain pen. Five years later he also received a patent for his “Lucky Curve” feed, and that patent was used up until 1928. His pen factory was the biggest pen factory in the world by 1908 and created one of the biggest pen brands in the world. That factory was located on Main Street in Janesville, Wisconsin.
In the period between 1920. and 1960, before Parker developed the ballpoint pen he remained one of the largest writing instruments manufacturers. His pen named Quink or quick drying ink was created in 1931, and it eliminated the need for blotting.
Ten years later the Parker company created one of the most famous and the most widely used model of a fountain pen in history, the Parker 51. Parker 51 was sold in more of $400 million worth through its thirty years of history. His brand was one of the first brands that had a presence worldwide.
Pen Parker Company bought company Norm Thompson in 1973, then Manpower in 1976 and then sold off Norm Thompson in 1981. The company was moved to New Haven, East Sussex, England in 1987. Gillette Company bought Parker in 1993. Seven years later, in 2000. Gillette sold it to Newell Rubbermaid company who was the biggest writing instrument company then owning Waterman, Liquid Paper, Rotring and many more famous brands.
Parker factory in Newhaven, East Sussex, England was closed in 2011. and was moved to Saint-Herblain, France. Later that year the factory located in Janesville, Wisconsin, USA was also closed.
Parker RB1 was a precursor of the Parker Vector, and it was first introduced in 1981. It was a roller ball pen with a simple cylindrical plastic cap. Three years later Parker created the new FP1 (as Fountain Pen 1) but keep the same design. Bothe BR1 and FP1 were produced until 1986. In 1986 Parker changed the design of the pen by making the cap longer nad barrel shorter and name it the “Vector Standard”. There is four model available today: the fountain pen, capped rollerball, pushbutton ballpoint, and pushbutton pencil.
As of 2012, there are four 5th Technolgy type pens, nine Fountain pens, eight Ballpoint pens nad two Inks and Refills still in company’s offer.