The mighty pencil is one of those discoveries that changed how a process was done and change the course for all eternity. We’ll talk about the mighty pencil. The mighty pen could be an even more incredible invention. Both of these writing instruments have revolutionized humanity’s written communication abilities and increased their understanding and learning. These communicating instruments were a boon for all the business world. These instruments ushered in the modern ways of today’s written communication, the typewriter, the keyboards, and the new stylus to write on modern technological inventions; computers, tablets, and cell phones. Could you ever have conceived of such? What a mind can conceive, it can achieve.
The ancient style of a stylus could be the forerunner of the pen or pencil/ pencil or pen.
In their day, the pen and pencil were a miracle.
Was the pen first or a pencil? The chicken or the egg? Does anyone know? Let us explore a bit. I would assume the first writing method was a stick in the dirt (which can be fun, by the way). Early days humans would use a piece of wood, burn it on end. As they drew or wrote on stones, cave walls, or wood, The charred point would leave markings, depicting a word or picture. Markings on rocks and cave walls using another shaper stone also left a history of stories for us. A type of stylus was known to exist in earlier days. Styluses used by the Egyptians and Mayans came from reeds and bamboo. Romans used a slender piece of iron. Styluses use was to inscribe on tablets of clay. Eventually, these methods evolved into more modern methods.
The stylus as the Egyptians used reed straws sharpened at the end and dipped into Egyptian made ink to make markings on papyrus. After the reed pens came the feather, the most elegant tool for writing. The feather called a quill that dipped into the ink could transfer the ink to parchment and paper in different formats or writing styles. The feather was sharpened at the end, cleaned and cured (baked) to make it durable. In the 19th century came the mighty fountain pen, ballpoint pens, felt pens, felt markers, highlighters. Different people are given credit for the changes in the pens throughout the years.
Where and how was ink secured for these writing instruments?
India, in the 4th century BC, made ink called “masi” from burnt bones, tar, and pitch.
The Greeks and Romans were known to create ink from soot, glue, and water, called “carbon ink.”
China, in the 23rd century BC, made ink from pine sap and a mixture of glue that came from hides. Of course, I am sure there are more sources, but those mentioned are enough for this writing. I need to go back to pencil for a bit.
As I said, the pencil’s beginning could also have come from the same methods I stated above. The impressing of markings and pictures on parchment and paper is graphite instead of ink. The casings evolved from the ideas of the reeds and stylus. Writing with graphite found its start in England. The discovery in England opened the door as did the ink for pens to forge the beginning of modern-day communication. The pencil first formed by wrapping a piece of string around the fragile strips of graphite. Then came the method of taking pieces of wood, laying the graphite in the middle, and gluing it together. Later came manufacturers that hollowed out the slim cylinder of wood and inserted a strip of graphite, automating forming pencils.
The more graphite in pencil, the darker it writes, a tidbit of info; thus, I like the #2 lead. Some companies add clay, which makes writing lighter. The graphite in pencils first thought to be lead, hence the name lead pencil. It is a lifesaver that graphite is not poisonous; I have seen people wet the tip of a pencil with their tongue. I assume this was to make writing darker or to flow easier.
Our earlier Americans relyed on the graphite forms coming from across the great sea. After the war with England, the supply dried up. So the need for this great necessity caused our proud, hard-working, and innovative patriots to make their own here in America. In 1812 wood was used to incase graphite. A cabinet maker William Monroe made the first wood pencil in America. The end of 19th-century pencil factories located in New York and NewJersey owned by German manufacturer Faber-Castell, Eberhard Faber. Respective companies are Eagle Pencil (Bero) and General pencil Company.
Tenessee has a tree the Eastern Red Cedar used to make pencils that were fragment free so no splinters could introduce itself to your skin. Because of this tree, most of the pencil manufacturers are located in the Tennesee area.
The mighty pencil and pens are not given much thought but are just there. We pick them up and use them so often a day; they impact us more than any instrument I know. It is used by every human old enough to write. These small instruments have empowered humanity and impacted our communication in ways never imagined by those who invented them. Every business in the world uses both a pencil or pen/pen or pencil. The pencil and pens also make a significant impact on the companies that manufacture them.
Companies are moving into the 21st century with all the new technology but still rely on these instruments. The old stylus from Roman times has evolved to the new type stylus used in technology products today. From the beginning to the end – from the ending to the new beginning.