The Conway Stewart brand, synonymous with British
heritage, has been privileged to have its products chosen as official
gifts of the British government. Owners of Conway Stewart pens include
the British royal family, prime ministers, US and Heads of State
from around the world. It is only fitting to pay homage to one of
the most important events of the British history, The Great Exhibition
The Great Exhibition, also known as
the Crystal Palace Exhibition, was held in Hyde Park London, during
May 1 to October 15, 1851. It was the first in a series of World's
Fair exhibitions of culture and industry that were to be a popular
19th century feature.
Great Exhibition of 1851 was conceived to symbolize the industrial,
military and economic superiority of Great Britain. However, by only
representing the feats of Britain it would have resulted in the exclusion
of the technological achievements pioneered by the British in its
many colonies and protectorates, so it was decided to make the exhibit
truly international with invitations being extended worldwide.
The Crystal Palace building was originally
designed in only ten days by Sir Joseph Paxton who had been the head
gardener at Chatsworth. The first of the 1,060 iron columns was erected
in the autumn of 1850 and 300,000 panes of glass were fixed with over
200 miles of sash bars. It took less than a year to build and when
completed it covered nine acres.
Great Exhibition was opened on May 1st by Queen Victoria and was known
by some as the eighth wonder of the world. More than 20,000 people
visited it on its opening day and in the months that followed, people
from all classes and regions flocked to see it. It was 'the' event
of its time and set the standard for all future exhibitions. There
were more than 16,000 exhibitors from as far away as China and over
6,200,000 visitors to the exhibition. Entries were not limited to
the decorative arts. Engineering, raw materials, the Jacquard loom,
an envelope machine, tools, kitchen appliances, steel-making displays,
from silks to clocks, furniture to farm machinery to scientific instruments
were all well represented. There were many electrical applications,
although there was little understanding of their potential except
for the electric telegraph. The most popular exhibitions were those
housed in the machinery court, some of it powered by the Exhibition's
own steam engines. The United States scored a major win with McCormick's
reaper, cutting an incredible twenty acres in a day.
Albert, Queen Victoria's consort, was very keen that the exhibition
should be self financing. It was so successful that its profits
were responsible for several other museums.
The Great Exhibition made a surplus of £186,000
which allowed for the foundation of public works such as the Albert
Hall, the Science Museum, the National History Museum, Imperial
Institute and the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Crafted by hand, the Great Exhibition pen measures
a rather large 8 inches when closed. In keeping with the grand nature
of the Great Exhibition itself, we've designed the Great Exhibition
Pen to be an impressive addition to our line.
Sized to immediately grab attention, the impressive
nature of the Great Exhibition doesn't stop there. The overlay is
crafted by hand by renowned English craftsman, Henry Simpole. This
design is timeless and is reminiscent of the classic British overlay
pens crafted in the early 1900s.
Each pen carries the English Assay hallmark authenticating
the precious metal overlay. The pen is mounted with a solid 18 carat
nib, delivering a smooth wet line.
keeping within this historic theme, Conway Stewart chose to utilized
a filling mechanism typically used in the late 1800s, the Eye Dropper.
Using modern materials and taking full benefit of the size of this
great pen, the ink capacity is equivalent to 8 x ink cartridges!
The Great Exhibition Pen was featured on the cover
of Stylus magazine, June/July 2006 issue. Stylus is an international
publication with a healthy circulation figure inexcess of 38,000
per issue. The magazine is distributed through newsstands, bookstores,
fine quality pen retailers, specialty boutiques, jewelers, and of
course to subscribers. To read the full article, please
The Great Exhibition pen will no doubt become a
prized possession for any discerning pen enthusiast, investor and
aficionado of true British craftsmanship at its best.