Business letters and invoices

older than 30 years

Moderators: werner, toni

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:42 pm

Topic: Business letters and invoices
Startbeitrag
Author: Frodo


Hello to all friends of fountain pens,

Except for collecting fountain pens, I also like to delve into the history of the fountain pen industry and therefore collect documents and stationary from the sector. I would like to show you a small series of business letter headings and invoices from famous writing instrument companies. Surprisingly, very expensive paper with beautiful watermarks was used for rather short-dated letters. Aside from prices won at trade fairs, the prints in the illustrated headings often were very elaborately and colorfully designed images of the production sites. In contrast to the images of today, the strong smoking chimneys of the factories were important to be shown on the photos. Of what is seen as an environmental outrage today, used to be a symbol of successful and prosperous production.
As a first impression, I will upload a picture of three letter heads from the Günther Wagner Pelikan factory.
Top: 1908, middle: 1930, bottom: 1932

Greetings,

Frodo
Attachments
fül%20briefkopf%20pelikan%20003[1].jpg
fül%20briefkopf%20pelikan%20003[1].jpg (170.12 KiB) Viewed 3775 times

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:43 pm

Antwort_01
Author: hotap

Hello Frodo,

Thanks for your idea and especially for the way of carrying it out by uploading the headings. I, for my part, would love to see some more.

As I am also interested in everything that is concerned with all my hobbies, I really appreciate your idea, even though I do not possess any historical stationary myself. For this reason, I am anxious to see what other historical paper works you (or others) might present us.

When I had first seen the pictures, I thought "why not send Pelikan copies of the old invoices, so that they can see how nicely the writing can look with a flexible Pelikan nib.

But giving it a second thought, it probably is useless. Today's business letters, with their run of the mill letter headings - computer made – aren't written by hand and nib anymore. Even a handwritten signature mostly is printed.

I guess from that perspective, the time of the nice, green, illustrated stationary was a better one, if not necessarily nicer.

Many greetings,
Günter

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:43 pm

Antwort_02
Author: Werner

Hello Frodo,

I, as well, have a soft spot for everything around the topic of fountain pens, ink, and so on. So, thank you for your letter heads. You don't get to see things like that anymore too often, so I really enjoyed looking at your uploads.

Werner

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:44 pm

Antwort_03
Author: absia

Frodo,

Your idea was absolutely perfect. Who says we only spend our time here on the forum only talking about fountain pens and other writing instruments? The "trappings" just as well belong to our beloved pens. So let us open a sub-forum for historical documents from the world of fountain pens, etc. However, I have one thing to admit: There's not much I can say. The expertise on this specific topic, which I have always admired, is a gift granted to others like you, dear Frodo! (And others in the forum)

I am also aware of that our forum has become a resort for some wise guys who use information from this forum for their own purposes of presentation and enrichment. So, I fully understand if some of you might not feel okay about sharing your knowledge with the internet publicity, which most of you have probably achieved by detailed research and hard work.

However, luckily we have our regulars' tables and fairs for information of the like. They have the great advantage that you attend them in person. The people there see who you are and who it is sharing the information and you get to know lots and lots of interesting people, whom you otherwise might never would have met in your life!

So: Off to Nuremberg! (for example)

Greetings,
Peter

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:45 pm

Antwort_04
Author: Frodo

Hello Fountain pen friends,

Thank you for your support. Actually, every once in a while a stationary like this one shows up on the market, although some have their price. Actually, I purchased these documents and old newspaper commercials for exhibitions. Contents and presentation show a lot of historical information. Especially for fans of old scriptures and flexible pens there is an invoice of 1909. The format doesn't match those of today, because DIN formats had not existed back then.

Greetings,
Frodo
Attachments
fül%20briefkopf%20brause%203[1].jpg
fül%20briefkopf%20brause%203[1].jpg (190.67 KiB) Viewed 3755 times

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:47 pm

Antwort_05
Author: Frodo

In contrast to the language used in business letters today, the language used in the past was from friendly to ornate. In some of the texts it seems that the writer was making justified claims while bowing numerous times.
Here some passages from a letter written by J. S. Staedtler, who is asking a retail store to give back some commercial figurines.

Frodo

…I have allowed myself to send you a set of MARS figurines. Hoping that the decoration has meanwhile served its purpose and your earnings have been prosperous, I would be grateful to receive a notice concerning the whereabouts of these figurines. Should you no longer need the decoration, I would like to ask you to pack the figurines very carefully, as I have unfortunately already experienced great damage on decorations of the like, and send them back. By own experience I have come to the conclusion that good and careful packaging makes it impossible for these figurines to break and they will last even far distances in transportation.
I request a friendly notice concerning the point of time when we may have the shop window material at our disposal as well as your notification concerning your decision on the new commercial figurines. Thank you very much in advance for the favor of your reply.
Always at your service, I commend myself, respectfully
J. S. Staedtler
Attachments
fül%20briefkopf%20staedtler-%20mars%201[1].jpg
fül%20briefkopf%20staedtler-%20mars%201[1].jpg (113.75 KiB) Viewed 3752 times

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:48 pm

Antwort_06
Author: Rene

Hello Frodo,

Also thank you on my behalf for the wonderful headings and invoices. That is exactly what fascinates me about "the good old times": Despite of it being letters, instruction manuals, commercials, handwritings or the choice of words: It is said in more friendly words and is expressed much nicer than today. I am especially thinking of "modern" instruction manuals of technical devices or furniture. By taking a closer look at the handwritten invoices, you realize: the bends all have the same size, the letters are all written in equal height, the great and detailed ornate lettering: it all looks so artistic – even though it is "only" an invoice. Compare it to today's writings...Surely, they did not have a lot of time for writing, either. It had to be written just as quickly as today, only that it had to look nicer, too. I guess, here shows the strict education at school, especially when learning to read and write. It must have been very elaborate and attended with lots of practice. Try writing with a nib like that yourself. I, form y part, am glad to have my computer in the corner with numerous script types in it and that my handwriting can look the way it does.

What I happened to notice on the invoice by the company Brause & Co.: It was written for a family "Otto Schmidt" from Aschersleben. Aschersleben is my neighbor town. It would be interesting to know if there might have been stationary store run by a family Schmidt back then or if it was meant for a private address. Unfortunately, I cannot read the handwriting where the goods are listed well enough to make further conclusions.

Well then, dear Frodo, I hope to get to see some more nice headings from your collection and wish all male writers of this forum a happy Father's Day!

Greetings,
René

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:49 pm

Antwort_07
Author: G_Paesold

Hello Frodo

Thank you for sharing your beautiful pieces! Your aspect on the smoking chimneys is interesting. You never stop learning. I like the old invoice to Otto Schmidt a lot, too.

Again thank you and best wishes,
Guenther

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:49 pm

Antwort_08
Author: Frodo

Hello fountain pen friends,
A showpiece of the Twenties. The image alone has the size of one third of the paper size and still the house seems to be jumping out of the paper at full tilt. By the way, I've never seen the "Lindwurm" as a trademark of Geha's before.

Frodo
Attachments
briefkopf%20geha%202[1].jpg
briefkopf%20geha%202[1].jpg (101.47 KiB) Viewed 3745 times

hotap
Posts: 101
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 7:51 pm

Re: Business letters and invoices

Post by hotap » March 2nd, 2010, 8:50 pm

Antwort_09
Author: Frodo

Hello fountain pen friends,
This is the backside of an invoice sent for repairing services by the company Kaweco in Heidelberg in 1909.
There was a short price list attached on the bottom with prices ranging from 5 to 25 Marks! The luxury model was decorated with a golden band excluding a sheeting made of stainless steel or nacre. The prices were pretty tough for those times.

Frodo
Attachments
fül%20Rückseite%20Rechnung%20Kaweco%202[1].jpg
fül%20Rückseite%20Rechnung%20Kaweco%202[1].jpg (125.43 KiB) Viewed 3747 times

Post Reply