There are some classic fountain pens on the market. These include Parker’s Duofold, Pelikan 100 and Waterman’s Pink nib. The luxury fountain pens from Italian Aurora and Montegrappa also have a high status on the market. The question is, however, whether it is not the Montblanc Meisterstück 149 that holds the greatest icon status among all fountain pens.
Montblanc Meisterstück 149 fountain pen
It was a Meisterstück 149 that John F. Kennedy used when he signed important documents. Even Ernest Hemingway wrote with this pen, although Montegrappa has come to be associated with him. At the Foreign Office in Berlin, two Meisterstück 149s are always available for signing various agreements.
In the 1974 James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun, starring Roger Moore, a gold Meisterstück is used as a weapon. He also uses a similar pen in the 1983 film Octopussy.
But it is not only because of its famous users that it has achieved iconic status. It’s also a design classic that has a permanent home at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Meisterstück 149 was launched back in 1924 and the number on the pen was initially only an internal production number.
However, the hand-engraved number 4810 on the tip of the pen is of greater symbolic significance as it indicates the height in metres of the Mont Blanc mountain.
The Montblanc trademark was registered in 1910 and from 1913 the symbol was also used on the top of the pens. It is a six-pointed star with rounded tips, intended to symbolise the six valleys of Mont Blanc.
In the 1930s, Montblanc introduced a lifetime guarantee for its Meisterstück fountain pens to make clear its message of quality. After ballpoint pen technology improved in the 1950s, fountain pens became less and less popular in everyday use. Since then, in many cases the symbolic value of owning a Meisterstück has been more important than its usefulness.
Montblanc is now also known for its luxury leather goods, watches and luggage. However, if one is to stick to fountain pens, the special editions released each year under the Meisterstück Great Masters collection are of particular interest.
Here, Montblanc has collaborated with the English company James Purdey & Son to produce a fountain pen made in Germany from Turkish walnut.