New Jersey is famous for its many charming diners, beaches, and even being home to the longest boardwalk in the United States.
However, this oceanside state is now also emerging as the capital of fountain pens.
Yes, you read that right, New York and other states are getting a run for their money.
So, in this article, we take you on a brief tour to explore how and why the fountain pen renaissance has found a home in New Jersey.
For a long time, shopping for fountain pens or writing necessities such as ink meant taking a trip into New York or Philly.
There were hardly any shops in New Jersey that you could truly count on to have a generous variety of supplies or fountain pen designs.
Fortunately, the dynamic Goldspot pen store eventually put down roots in the city and made life much easier for fountain pen enthusiasts, famous for shipping everything from Parker fountain pens to premium Caran d’Ache rollerball pens.
It has since been joined in the market by GW Pens in the early 2000s. The Fountain Pen Hospital located just a stone’s throw away also has a significant client base in New Jersey.
Aside from making New Jersey a pen shoppers’ heaven, these retailers reignited the state’s interest in fountain pens with their stunning and frequently updated collections.
Some, like Goldspot, also fan that fire with informative blogs, events, and Youtube videos that nurture the fountain pen community in Newark and beyond.
Famous Fountain Pen Commissions
Custom fountain pens have, throughout history, remained a well-regarded gift item.
New Jersey is now woven into that history as some of the most famous fountain pens were commissioned in the state as gifts for world leaders.
A notable example is the history-rich fountain pen that was gifted to Pope Francis by the city of Philadelphia during his visit in 2015.
Originally, GW Pens manufactured 3 pieces of this unique pen. One was for the Pope, another was donated to a church while the 3rd is kept at the Philadelphia History Museum.
Former President Barack Obama and HRH Prince Henry of Wales have also had the pleasure of receiving one-of-a-kind fountain pens made in New Jersey.
The buzz surrounding these commissions has had a hand in attracting fountain pen shoppers to the state and persuading more locals to invest in these impressive writing instruments.
A Special Fountain Pen Store
Did you know that New Jersey is home to the only retail store that sells fountain pens manufactured on-site? How fascinating is that!
The beauty and rarity of this store is that you can walk in and commission a custom fountain pen with the guidance of an expert.
With some planning, the store may even give you a brief tour of the premises and show you different aspects of their pen production processes.
If your curiosity is piqued by intricate details such as nibs, pen engraving, or the materials used to make a pen, this outstanding store in Woodstown deserves a spot on your travel bucket list.
It transforms buying a fountain pen into a priceless experience that you are unlikely to find elsewhere.
Fountain Pen Conventions and Forums
Every January, Philadelphia hosts a fountain pen convention where vendors showcase their pens and other accessories such as journals and fountain pen inks.
These conventions have provided a great opportunity, by extension, for attendees to learn about the magnificent variety of pens that New Jersey has to offer.
In turn, more fountain pen enthusiasts are now visiting different outlets in New Jersey in search of custom and limited edition pieces that they now know they can find in the state.
Incidentally, not even Covid-19 could dim this upward tick of interest.
The restrictions gave rise to robust online FPS forums. More people also began journaling at home and e-commerce fountain pen retailers like Goldspot were there to deliver what they needed. The most popular fountain pen communities are Fountain Pen Network and FPGeeks.
Any true fan of fountain pen writing can attest that it is a great reward to discover all the fascinating designs and rich contributions that New Jersey has to offer to the craft.
More so considering that it may have remained obscured by the glitz of New York outlets, the swanky events in Philly, and many other distractions.
Next time you are in the neighborhood, take some time to shop around and take it all in. You might just find yourself a new souvenir for your fountain pen collection.