A. A. Waterman's early history
Posted 21 April 2012 - 05:55 AM
But here's the best bit. Did you know that he was a traveling sales representative for the L. E. Waterman Co. from about 1887 to 1894? Here's a short summary of an interview with A. A. Waterman in American Stationer from 1894. At that time, he was still singing the praises of Waterman's "Ideal" Fountain Pen.
He established his publishing firm during that time, and he must have left the L. E. Waterman Co. sometime between 1894 and 1897, because he established A. A. Waterman & Co. as a pen company at the same address in 1897, which later became the Modern Pen Co. in 1901. He received some pen patents between 1901 and 1904, and was forced out of his own company by the other directors by 1905.
Posted 23 April 2012 - 05:44 AM
Posted 14 May 2012 - 08:33 PM
In the Feb 13 article, F. D. Waterman is talking about the people in the West, but he really seems to be talking about the salesmen who travel into the West, including himself. But what he really appears to be doing is describing A. A. Waterman. "There is a peculiarity about the people in the West. They become not s much the customers of the [company] as of the traveler, and if he should [switch to another company], he would carry his trade with him. It is the man, not the goods, which they seem to look at." He said he knew of an instance where a salesman took a similar position with another company and took every one of his customers with him to the new company and held them for years. In the Apr 2 article, A. A. Waterman is described as "meeting with his usual success" out in the West. "[He] is so closely identified with the pen and the company he represents that it is difficult to determine to which is due the success of this pen. . . . . He is good at selling fountain pens."
Posted 15 May 2012 - 01:33 AM
I always wondered why there was so much animosity between the L. E. Waterman Co. and the A. A. Waterman Co. Well, this is why. L. E. and F. D. probably felt personally betrayed by this defection, and by this encroachment upon their territory and upon their name. It wasn't just the similarity of the company names. It was more personal than that. They resented the fact that they had lost a salesman who was "favorably known to almost every dealer in the country". The way they saw it, they helped to create him, not the other way round.
After a series of bad co-partnerships, A. A. was forced out of his own company by his then partners Frazer & Geyer. And who was Steven J. Meyerpeter? He also eventually left the Waterman's company and formed a series of his own pen companies, including Resevo, and Modern Pen Co., the later incarnations of A. A. Waterman Pen Co., but well after A. A. was forced out of the company.
Posted 14 November 2012 - 05:33 AM
First off I didn't realize we were still posting here - that's great! Secondly, it raises a good point - what happened with AA that he decided to make his own pen? At LE Waterman the work situation must have been negative enough probably matched with an opportunity with Gibson to make him try his hand at pen making. Not just that though, as we see he sticks it to LE by calling it AA Waterman as he could have called it Gibson or anything else to avoid a confrontation. AA doesn't give up using Waterman either so it became a real point of principle with him. LE died in '00 or '01 (from memory) so it wasn't just the old man that hated AA and I do think they hated him. Certainly LE was formidable as other companies and people associated with AA actively hid from LE to make pens (the Colonials as I'm sure you are aware).
Posted 15 November 2012 - 05:45 AM
Yeah, a few of us diehards are still here. I've posted over 50 topics here based upon my Am. Stat. findings since you were here last. I go into what happened with A. A., and what pushed him to make his own pen in another topic about the L. E. & A. A. split. A lot of your questions and statements are addressed over there.
One reason he called it A. A. Waterman & Co. and not Gibson, or anything else was that he provided all the patents, and the expertise, and probably most of the funding. L. E. died in 1901, and A. A. was forced out of his own company by 1904, and the new owners of both companies inherited all their founders' animosities.
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