The company that became Montegrappa was founded by Austrians in 1912 in the northern Italy town of Bassano del Grappa. Its first pen was the Elmo, which was based on the design of the Waterman safety pen. The company had its first brush with fame during World War I, when Ernest Hemingway used one of the company’s pens while working as a volunteer ambulance driver for the Red Cross. John Dos Passos, who was also in Italy at the time, may have written parts of his first novel with an Elmo.

A pair of Italians bought the company in 1925, renaming it Industria Pennini Oro e Penne Stilografiche Elmo. The firm’s initials (IPOPSE) remained on its gold nibs until the mid-1930s, by which time the company was well regarded for its celluloid-and-silver fountain pens. Early pens had button or lever fillers, while ones made just prior to World War II had piston fillers and transparent housings, so the user could see the pen’s ink level at a glance. Today, Montegrappa is best known for its limited-edition pens named for signs of the Chinese zodiac, its Dragon pen being the most famous. The celluloid caps and bodies of these high-end writing instruments are baked for up to six months, and are often cured for a year.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Ernesto Soler's extensive homage to one of the most popular pens ever produced, the Parker "51," introduced in 1941… [read review or visit site]

Jim Mamoulides' vintage and modern pen-cyclopedia. Start at the main gallery, featuring detailed articles (with pho… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Montegrappa Ayrton Senna Limited Edition 18k Nib Silver Fountain Pen Isics3se* Sealed* Montegrappa Salvador Dali Surrealista Geopoliticus Child Fountain Pen *sealed* Montegrappa Sophia Loren Black Limited Edition Rb 572/1934 Msrp1300.00Krone Limited Edition Precious Metal: Black Tie RollerballMontegrappa Salvador Dali Sterling Silver Rollerball PenStock Clearance! Montegrappa Extra 1930 Fountain Pen, TurtleMontegrappa Ayrton Senna Limited Edition 18k Med Nib Black Fountain Pen Isics3scMontegrappa Miya Argento - Sterling Silver & Celluloid Fountain PenMontegrappa "reminiscence" Solid 925 Silver Greek Pattern 14k Nib+case No Rsv!!Montegrappa Prototype Eu 50th Anniversary Fountain Pen Cobalt Blue & .925 Silver Montegrappa Nerouno Sub Seconds Men's Watch Swiss Made Idnuwaib Swiss MadeMontegrappa Miya Fountain Pen, Sterling Silver Marble Red Celluloid Montegrappa Pele Icons Limited World Cup Soccer Silver Luxury Fountain PenMontegrappa Fountain Pen, .925 Silver, Octagonal, Med 14ct Montegrappa NibMontegrappa Fountain Pen, .925 Silver, Chevron Chased, Fine 18ct Montegrappa Nib Montegrappa Nerouno Sub Seconds Men's Watch Swiss Made Idnuwaiw Swiss MadeMontegrappa American Dream Special Edition Fountain Pen Montegrappa Fountain Pen, .925 Silver/gold Plated, Chevron Chased, Fine 18ct NibRare Montegrappa 1912 Aphrodite Fountain Pen Box & Papers - Does Not Include PenMontegrappa For Ferrari Presentation BoxMontegrappa Italia Fountain Pen! Excellent Shape! Nr! Lqqk! Save Big Over RetailMontegrappa 1912 Personal Mini Silver/blue Pen (new) Box-rare CollectableMontegrappa - "filigree" Stainless Steel Round Cufflinks - Idomclpr