Crayon Holder and Extension Bar

A 3-3/8" round brass handle has an opening for inserting a crayon. It is not marked. The second object is a 3-1/2" hexagonal brass bar with hollow steel ends. One end is marked with the number 24 and the letter L. The other end is marked with the number 22 and the letter P. The bar could be inserted into a pen handle to accommodate different sizes of leads, although the ends and the openings in the ends have the same diameters.
The two writing instruments are made from brass of different colors, so the pieces may not belong together. The dates of objects purchased with these writing instruments suggest they were made in the 18th century. Crayon holders and double-ended pencil holders were known in Europe by the 17th century and widespread by the 18th century.
Reference: Maya Hambly, Drawing Instruments, 1580–1980 (London: Sotheby's Publications, 1988), 65–66.
Currently not on view
Object Name
drawing instrument
crayon holder
date made
18th century
Physical Description
brass (overall material)
steel (overall material)
overall: 14.2 cm x .6 cm x .6 cm; 5 19/32 in x 1/4 in x 1/4 in
place made
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Pens and Pencils
Science & Mathematics
Drawing Instruments
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Pens and Pencils
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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