Hardcastle pipe dating
The final goal is to be able to publish photos of the many freehand styles, reporting accurately (as far as you can in a virtual context, as an example of an objective analysis should be done with the original pipe in hand , and not showing the reader a simple photo) how to recognize the work of different "master carvers".
Other interesting notes can be added about "micro-details" that can be traced back to changes in the eras.
Nothing is said especially of the revival that started in the year 2000, and the move of production of Charatans to Colin Fromm 's Invicta, recently acquired by Dunhill precisely for this revival project, that involves some of the brands owned. Charatan was founded by Frederick Charatan in 1863 in London.
Mr Charatan was an immigrant full of ambition who immediately attempted to create an elite product.
There is virtually no detailed literature on that, even though it encompasses at least 4 distinct eras!
From a first Dunhill era dating 1977-1981 where the pipe production continued in the original factory based in Grosvenor Street.
In the meantime the production had moved to Grosvenor Street.
From Kenneth Barnes to Barry Jones who started a new adventure with Tilshead Pipe Co., or like Dennis Marshall who, together with his son John, founded Milville; we can identify a number of amazing carvers, former employees of Charatan, among them the less famous but very important Dan Tennison.
Needless to say that such personalities, even during their time at Charatan, left many distinctive signs on their creations, creating a challenge for later enthusiasts to spot them.
I say difficult and easy at the same time simply because Charatan, during its many mutations, has always left some unmistakable marks on its pipes; so unequivocal that dating does not prove a huge problem. In the past I have read many articles about dating Charatan's pipes.
The difficulty, however, lies in the knowledge of the various eras, which are many and often create doubt among collectors. The various articles that have appeared in journals and around the web cause the rest, because they are often incomplete or contradictory, creating confusion among fans of the pipes. I remember seeing years ago a beautiful site on the internet where there were also many examples of photos. Then I read the article by Tad Gage appeared in the Pipes and Tobaccos magazine at p.
Moreover I noticed that Charatan has never been a producer similar to other British factories.