110. Peterson Book Publication Dates & Launch Set

The Peterson Pipe: The Story of Kapp & Peterson has publication dates and a price! Word from Briar Books Press has it that EU orders may ship as early as Christmas through Smokingpipes.eu and Lubinski.it’s various European retailers. You can read about it here and here.

The official book launch and signing is scheduled for the 2019 Chicagoland Pipe & Tobacciana Show, held at the Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, Illinois. We’ll be doing a presentation Friday evening, May 4th, but of course we’ll be at the Briar Books Press table both days of the show.

Here’s the Table of Contents:

If you haven’t seen the awesome book trailer our designer made for the Chicago show last year or just want to see it again, click here  and then enter the password “Peterson.”

If you’re a subscriber to Peterson Pipe Notes, come by the Briar Books Press table and check your name off our subscriber’s list for a little thank-you gift. Your enthusiasm, patience and encouragement has been a vital part of the creative process.

90. Peterson Pipe Book Preview Video

I received the go-ahead this weekend to post the The Peterson Pipe book preview video we presented at the Chicagoland pipe show a few weeks ago, and here it is:


If you want to show it at a pipe club meeting, have the president of your club get in touch with me about the possibility of a higher-resolution image.

Our publisher also updated the home page at Briar Books Press with the following information about the book’s publication:

For the past eight-odd years Mark Irwin and Gary Malmberg have been chipping away on a manuscript for a book, that when it’s published, will be known as The Peterson Pipe, the Story of Kapp & Peterson. So how far along is the effort? is a question I field regularly from the many “Pete Nuts” in Pipedom. Very far along. In fact, as the book-building process goes, excitingly near the finish line. We can’t smell printer’s ink or feel the smoothness of the text, but using a baseball analogy, the entire work is rounding third base. Editing is somewhere around 90 percent complete. Layout of the fifteen chapters and two appendixes–some 350 pages, gorgeously crafted by Marie Irwin, is completed. What’s left to do? A third and final global edit, a dust-jacket design, and then it’s off to a professional indexer. I hasten to add that owner and CEO of Peterson, Tom Palmer, has written a very heartfelt foreword to introduce the work. And no stranger to the American pipe collector, pipeman and author of several pipe books, Rick Newcombe has penned a prelude that truly portrays why Peterson is such a fine smoking instrument and collectible still after some 150 years of continuous production. An official release and book signing at Chicagoland 2019 is not out of the realm of possibilities. $TBA

And now you know as much as I do. Okay, back to work. . . .

73. Peterson at the 2017 IPCPR (Video)

I’ve often thought it might be fun to attend the IPCPR, although the ethos of the cigar crowd, which seems to predominate at the show, is usually  far from mine and most pipemen I know. Nevertheless, I must confess I started smoking “seegars” in 6th grade under the influence of Walt Kelly’s Albert the Alligator. Swisher Sweets, mostly. The big ones. No kidding.

Kelly was an inveterate cigar smoker, and I was so immersed in the world of the Okefenokee Swamp crew that it just seemed like the right thing to do. Fortunately in those by-gone days, all a minor had to do was walk into any drugstore, newsstand, or tobacconist and have the ready coin. There was a drugstore across from Brookside Baptist Church (which it felt like my family attended five or six times a week), and on Wednesday or Sunday nights I sometimes found it possible to escape for a few minutes, make a purchase, and have a smoke. How I did that without either of my parents ever suspecting, I don’t know. It wasn’t an act of rebellion, just an extension of my literary life, although I knew better than to tell either of them.

Well, all this to say that I stumbled on this short video interview with Tom Palmer, CEO at Peterson, from the IPCPR 2017 show last July at http://www.stogiereview.com, and reblog it here with the kind permission of Brian Hewitt. Tom looks like he’s had a busy day, but if you watch and listen carefully, there’s a few surprises that will more than make it worth your while.


Fumare in Pace!


43. The Making of A Peterson Spigot (Video)

1999 XL339 SpigotI’ve been working for the past few days on the hallmark reference chart for The Peterson Pipe: The Story of Kapp & Peterson, and so it comes as a relief tonight to stop and simply admire the silverwork the date letters represent in a short piece of video magic courtesy Smokingpipes.com.

If you’ve ever taken a minute to examine Peterson’s silverwork under a loupe, you know something special is going on. They don’t just pull a band out of a box and loop it over the shank. Each piece is hand-turned and involves numerous operations.

You might think going to the factory would help you understand the process better than a video, but that isn’t really the case. There’s so much going on, what with lighting and noise and machinery and trying not to get in anyone’s way. I can testify that this is a gem of a piece, letting us get up close to the work in a way I couldn’t, despite two visits to the factory.

(Courtesy Smokingpipes.com)

The Peterson spigot story is an interesting one, told in the book through both the company’s history and interviews with its current and retired artisans. I won’t spoil it for you here except to say it goes back almost to the company’s beginning, then was lost to the tides of fashion for over fifty years before making a slow but steady comeback in the last decades of the twentieth century. While the System pipe may be in decline, the spigot certainly is not, so much so that it’s become the visual icon for the company’s twenty-first century profile in much the same way the System pipe was for the twentieth century.

The Craftsman Line spigots have obviously been a great success for the company, leading the way for the new Caramel (or “Champagne”) Spigot line just now hitting e-tailers in the U.S., and the promise of the Roundstone Spigots to come.  If you don’t have one, there’s never been better time.



Pictured at top: 1999 XL339 Spigot, hallmarked “N”