Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Farewell, Mirado

[An Eagle Mikado and Webster’s Second. Click for a larger pencil.]

Stephen at pencil talk has learned that Newell Brands Office Products has discontinued the Mirado pencil. The Mirado began life in the early twentieth century as the Mikado, manufactured by the Eagle Pencil Company. As Henry Petroski’s The Pencil: A History of Design and Circumstance notes, Eagle changed the pencil’s name from Mikado to Mirado on December 8, 1941.

I’ve written with many a Mirado, and especially liked Mirado Woodtones, in natural colors with a clear glossy coat. Recent Papermate Mirados were pretty mediocre. I found the Eagle Mikado in the photograph some years ago, probably at a flea market. It was, and is, still unsharpened.

Here’s some background on the Mikado/Mirado.

Related reading
All OCA pencil posts (Pinboard) : “Catch” of s lifetime : Jean Arthur holds what looks like a Mikado : The New Yorker visits the Eagle Pencil Company : “This is the Anatomy of an Eagle”

comments: 6

zzi said...

"Pencil Talk". At first I thought it was a podcast. The blog is good thanks.

Michael Leddy said...

Yes, it’s a good one.

sophocles said...

i was not aware until the morning of this post that the Mirado had been discontinued. i was not much of a wooden pencil user after about 1955 or 1960 when i migrated to one or another mechanical pencil, or occasionally a ballpoint pen or drafting pencil. but for no particular reason, about the time of the discontinuance, the old jingle was running in my brain "Eagle Mirado, the pencil that stays sharp for pages" (which i assume was only true for the harder compositions). but the question is - does anybody else remember the jingle? was it a television, or a radio advertisement that i am remembering? trips down memory lane would be appreciated.

Michael Leddy said...

The thought of a radio or television commercial for a woodcased pencil is very appealing. The search is on!

Michael Leddy said...

Stay tuned — I’m putting together something I’ll post tomorrow.

Michael Leddy said...

Here it is.