Cliff Clavin and Dixon.

Seems there was a program on television lately about companies that have not out-sourced much of their production and still make their gear in the USA, including the Dixon Ticonderoga company. The show is called “Made in America.” Seeing as how I’m sitting here chewing on a Tri-Write, I wish I could have caught it.

Making pencils (and other products) over-seas is a hot topic, certainly, but we pass no judgment here at Pencil Revolution. There are certainly foreign-made pencils that are much better than some American pencils, and vice versa. We’ve found both gems and junk from the US, from Europe and from Asia.

Still, given that making pencils in America has always been a part of Dixon’s approach and that this approach was certainly instrumental in strengthening the American pencil industry during the first World War (when good German pencils were getting hard to come by), this is still something admirable. The American pencil industry was and is beneficial to the industry as a whole, if for no other reason, then for the mechanizations made standard here.

(Thanks, Armand and Ronin1516 for the link!)

Happy Labor Day!

10 thoughts on “Cliff Clavin and Dixon.”

  1. I once had a college professor announce that a person’s intelligence could be guaged by the size of the eraser on his/her pencil. Since then I use extra, usually Ferber erasers, and leave the pencil eraser alone.

  2. Hey!

    Irrespective of where the pencil has been made…I think we all still view the pencil as the intrinsic instrument to impart knowledge…

    And I could not have encountered (encountered being the key word here)your site on a better day.

    We are celebrating Teachers’ Day in India today!

    Might I add that it was really good to read about pencils in an age driven by the mouse :-)

  3. Of course Dixon also has pencil manufacturing operations in Mexico, China and Chile & buys some items from other producers in China and Thailand. So it’s not quite accurate to say that Dixon stubbornly clings to USA production. Rather they effectively balance their supply strategy with the needs and demands of the market.

    Cheers to Anamika who has it “write” on the most important point about pencils.

  4. Jim,

    Consider this:

    A well-used eraser denotes consideration as much as correction. Who more than an intelligent person would spend time considering his or her own work and thoughts?


    Would an intelligent person want to be recognized as such by affectations as an unused eraser topping a pencil, or the works produced by that pencil?

    (My erasers are well-used, and well-appreciated, while my MENSA membership was short-lived due precisely to such ridiculous trappings and self-admiration.)

  5. Consider this…

    The average pencil is seven inches long, with just a half-inch eraser – in case you thought optimism was dead.
    – Robert Brault, American Poet (1952-

    I brought this forward from a comment I had made to an earlier post, because I thought it fit better here.

  6. Just visiting, but wanted to add that I am a hand-held eraser person and teach the same in my art classroom becaue I learned that students throw their pencil away the minute the eraser is gone and I like them to use pencils down to the last inch. So I used to ‘prune’ the eraser end off and sharpen that end for the classroom. UNTIL I discovered the Dixon Ticonderoga LADDIE. Smaller in diameter than a Kindergarden pencil, but larger than a regular pencil. Larger lead, lovely color and you can order them with or without the eraser from most school, office or art supply catalogs. It is wonderful to be able to buy a relatively inexpensive eraserless pencil. My kids now will use the pencil down to the nub and the extra bonus is that it draws beautifully, as well as any art pencil I have ever used.

  7. I know it has been a long time since anyone posted on this comment, but I thought you might all find it intereting that less than a year following the “Made in America” show aired, Dixon-Ticonderoga closed its doors and moved the plant to Mexico. The irony…

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