31.05.

1907: Penkala Patents his Fountain Pen

1907: Penkala Patents his Fountain Pen
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 31 May 1907
  • Eduard Penkala was born in what is now Slovakia, to parents of Polish-Dutch origin. He moved to Zagreb after he got married and settled there.

On this day Slavoljub Eduard Penkala patented the first solid-ink fountain pen. 

It was only a starting point in the further development of the mechanical pencil, which is colloquially often called a pen after its inventor. Penkala was born in the town of Liptovský Mikuláš in what is now Slovakia, to parents of Polish-Dutch origin.

He moved to Zagreb after he got married and settled there. There he launched the first production based on his inventions. When the demand for his pencils (“pens”) began to grow, he built a pen-and-pencil factory in Zagreb, employing up to 800 workers and which became one of the biggest writing utensils factories in the world at the time.

Slavoljub Penkala is also known for constructing the first Croatian aircraft. This aircraft took off for the first time in 1910 from the airfield in Črnomerec. This airfield in Zagreb thus became the first Croatian airport.

Penkala, among other things, also invented the hot water bottle,the rotating toothbrush, pesticide (“Krepax”), the anode battery, the dynamometer, the gauge, the rotary turbine, helicopter rotor blades, a device for measuring the flow of liquids, wax seals, a preparation for the impregnation of railway sleepers and many other inventions (about 80 of them in total). He died at only 50 years of age, leaving numerous inventions unrealized.

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