Ballpoint Pen Day Observed every year on 10 June, It may sound obscure to have a national holiday for ballpoint pens. It is observed to celebrate the achievement of two brothers for filing their patent for the original ballpoint pen. Thanks to them we no longer have to rely on messy quill and fountain pens!
A ballpoint pen, also known as a biro or ball pen, is a pen that dispenses ink over a metal ball at its point, i.e. over a “ball point”. The metal commonly used is steel, brass, or tungsten carbide. The design was conceived and developed as a cleaner and more reliable alternative to dip pens and fountain pens, and it is now the world’s most-used writing instrument millions are manufactured and sold daily. It has influenced art and graphic design and spawned an artwork genre.
Ballpoint Pen History
The concept of using a “ball point” within a writing instrument as a method of applying ink to paper has existed since the late 19th century. In these inventions, the ink was placed in a thin tube whose end was blocked by a tiny ball, held so that it could not slip into the tube or fall out of the pen.
The first patent for a ballpoint pen was issued on 30 October 1888 to John J. Loud, who was attempting to make a writing instrument that would be able to write “on rough surfaces — such as wood, coarse wrapping-paper, and other articles” which fountain pens could not. Loud’s pen had a small rotating steel ball, held in place by a socket. Although it could be used to mark rough surfaces such as leather, as Loud intended, it proved to be too coarse for letter-writing. With no commercial viability, its potential went unexploited and the patent eventually lapsed.