FORT MADISON, Iowa- The Sheaffer Pen Museum has opened a new collection of pens for public viewing that is considered rare, and unique. The museum accepted a gift of 160 Targa model pens, made in Fort Madison by the Sheaffer Pen Company.
The Sheaffer Pen plant closed in 2008, another company now uses that building. In 2011 the Sheaffer Pen Museum opened in downtown Ft. Madison. The Museum displays collections of pens made by Sheaffer, as well as machines and other displays from the plant.
“The company was inaugurated May the 16th in 1913, said Judy Burgin, Board Member of the Sheaffer Pen Museum. “Prior to that W.A. Sheaffer was a jeweler, he bought a jewelry store here in town, in it’s backroom he thought there had to be a better way to produce a pen.”
While the plant closed in 2008, many knew for years, the end was coming. Burgin said the cause of the closure was no mystery.
“Primarily would be the fact that people are not writing like they used to write,” said Burgin. “They’re using their iPad, computers, their phones, even those of us who are older or doing that now.”
In December the Sheaffer Museum accepted a special collection of 160 Targa Pens, made by Sheaffer. Pen collector Bill Sexauer, who lives in Washington State donated the collection to the museum.
“He was Mr. Targa himself,” said Burgin. “Over a period of time he amassed this collection, he made a point you would like to donate this collection to the Sheaffer pen Museum.”
Schaefer was like working for your family it was a wonderful place to work,” said Bernie McCauley. “I had opportunities, I traveled all over the world for Schaefer whether it be Europe, South America, Asia, I had wonderful experiences and both personal and educational.”
“It’s a history of Fort Madison and the amazing impact of the Sheaffer Family had on Fort Madison and on the economy,” said Burgin.
If you would like information about the Sheaffer Pen Museum, check out their Facebook Page.