Peterson

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Darwin Deluxe, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Kapp Royal Barrel, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Sherlock Holmes XL23 Silver Spigot, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Charles Peterson, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Charles Peterson's personal pipe, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Royal Irish XL90, Courtesy Jim Lilley
Silver XL23 Lestrade, Courtesy Jim Lilley
System Standard, Courtesy, Smokingpipes.com
System Standard w/P-Lip, Courtesy Smokingpipes.com

Please feel free to contribute to this article, but please do not edit the quoted materials, which are under copyright. See Pipedia:Copyright

Peterson website

An Introduction to the Peterson Pipe

By Jim Lilley

Thank you, Jim, for developing this wonderful article on Peterson pipes for Pipedia. --sethile 19:31, 18 October 2010 (UTC) -- Pipedia SYSOP

Genesis

The Nurnberg brothers Friedrich and Heinrich Kapp, whose elegant Dublin tobacconist first opened for business in 1865 on Grafton Street, Dublin could scarcely have dreamt that they would participate in the birth of a legend.
Friedrich & Heinrich, who christened their shop simply 'Kapp Brothers', soon made a name for themselves making and selling quality Meerschaum and Briar Root pipes.

It was not long before Charles Peterson, a large young Latvian immigrant from Riga, walked into Kapp Brothers Grafton Street premises with a revolutionary pipe and ambitious plans for the future. declaring that he could make better pipes than they could. Armed with an imaginative flair for pipes and a craftsman's background. There and then, Peterson suggested that the brothers go into partnership with him to turn his pipe dream into the world's dream pipe. They agreed and Peterson not only proved himself correct, but became the third partner in the fledgling firm. The company was renamed Kapp & Peterson.
Kapp and Peterson went on to become Dublin's most fashionable and respected manufacturer and purveyors of fine smoking products. Pipe and cigar smokers would stroll down to the elegant premises for professional advice on the subtle nuances that determine a good handmade cigar or pipe. The Peterson brand was embraced by politicians, business leaders, sportsmen, artists and writers.
Thereafter not much more background information is known about Charles,how his business progressed,his family life if any,when did he retire,where and when did he die? There are few if any historical references, other than the famous quote he wrote on his favorite pipe. The original pipe is on display in the Peterson Museum in Dublin and the silver band is engraved with the message: “When stolen, please return to 55, Grafton Street. C. Peterson”. He obviously had a great sense of humor.
It was a well-used pipe, and it is obvious that Charles valued it very much. It is a large thick-walled pipe, with a bowl that tapers internally.
Charles was a big man, with proportionately large hands, so this pipe would have fitted them well.

My great friend Dave Hughes has just completed some very interesting genealogical background research on Charles and his family. This has been most helpful, in filling in some of the historical, blank missing pieces. Thank you for a job well done Dave,it is much appreciated.
I do however realize that this is still work in progress and that Dave will continue to research Charles Peterson's family history. We will update any information that is relevant to the project.

Dave writes:- “For the year 1901, I have found a Charles Peterson living at 126 Rock Road in Dublin. His birth place is listed as Russia. His age is listed as 47(?). He's a widower and lists his occupation as pipe maker. I'm guessing this is our Mr. Peterson. Also a woman by the name of Mary O'Regan, who is listed as married and his landlady, lives at this address. She will show up again, later.”

“Jump to 1911. I find a Charles Peterson living at 144 Leinster Road, Dublin. His age is 60 years, birth place is listed as Riga. Again his occupation is listed as pipe maker. But now he is married, it looks like to Annie Peterson, age 34. They have been married for 9 years and have two living children. I believe their children are a son, Conrad Peterson, age 7, and a daughter, Isolde Peterson, age 2 months. One other child was born to them but has died. The year of birth and death are not given. Again I find Mary O'Regan listed as living in the household, but as his sister-in-law. Her sister is married to Charles. No mention is made of her husband although she is listed as married and head of household. I also find a John Peterson, age 45, whose birth place is Riga, living with them. He is listed as a lodger and his occupation is pipe maker, and he is single. Possibly a brother to Charles, or at least a close relative. Also in the house is another Conrad Peterson, age 21, whose birth place is also Riga. He is listed as a student and a visitor in the house. A young woman by the name of Agnes Geoghean is listed as a children's nurse and Kathleen Dornt is listed a as general servant, both single and both living in the house”.

It is also interesting to note that the family members included a children's nurse and a general servant living with them.This would appear to indicate that Charles's business was doing well financially.
As yet we have no information on where and when Charles died. Watch this space.

Peterson Time Line

For the sake of simplicity and aiding our purpose of ascertaining a more meaningful systematic approach,I will keep the Peterson story time- line basic and simple.

I appreciate that amongst Peterson aficionados, that the following is my interpretation and is open to debate!

Explanatory note - The earliest known reference to Peterson is 1865,coupled to the pipe patent expiring on 1910 and the pipe bowls and silver ceasing to be stamped 'patent' around 1915. I chose that as the end of the true original patent era. I appreciate that Mike Leverette chose that the patent era continued until 1922, because of the lip patent being out of sync with the finish of the original.

If we were to be pedantic, the sequential dates would show that there was a pre-patent period from 1865 until the registration of the first patent in 1891. A pipe patent period from 1891 until 1910 and a separate lip patent period from 1898 until 1922!! phew!!

This note was included to emphasis the above and hope that it will reconcile the 'experts' to the reasons for choosing that particular time line and that it is not entirely historically accurate.

We will look at the following historical periods in sequential isolation and in more detail.

  • 1875 - 1915 Patent Era
  • 1915 – 1949 Pre Republic Era
  • 1895 – 1970 London Made
  • 1950 – Present , Made in the Republic of Ireland

1875 - 1915 Patent Era Pipes

If I was asked if there was one single reason that motivates me to continue collecting Peterson pipes, I would most probably respond that it was their evocative and marvellous design history. Which to my mind,as a self confessed old romantic, opens a portal to more elegant times past and established Peterson as one of the forerunners of the classic pipe designs of today. In 1865 Charles Peterson opened a small tobacco shop in Dublin. Ten years later in 1875, Peterson approached the Kapp brothers, with a completely new innovative pipe design and with this, a very long-lived partnership was formed, Kapp & Peterson. Their new pipe design resulted in the now famous Peterson Patented System Smoking Pipe. By the 1890's , Kapp & Peterson were one of the most respected pipe and tobacco manufacturers in Europe and America.

A selection of patent era pipes, Jim Lilly collection

The original patent was issued in Great Britain and Ireland on Aug. 8, 1890, and in France on Jan.

22, 1891.
On May 1, 1894, U.S. Patent 519,135 was issued to Peterson for his unique construction of a pipe and mouthpiece, described as a “certain new and useful Improvement in Tobacco-Pipes,” that’s come to be known as the Peterson System pipe.
In 1898 another of Peterson's innovative pipe inventions became available, the Peterson-Lip (P-Lip) mouthpiece, designed to offset the inhaled smoke to the roof of the mouth,thus avoiding tongue bite.
Later in the Introduction text,we will go into more detail on the P-lip and system pipes.

For collectors the Patent Era appears to have been from K&P's formation in 1875, until the expiration of the patent; through to approximately 1910. The late Mike Leverette in his 'A Peterson Dating Guide' extended this period to 1922.
I would suggest keeping the period 1875 to 1910 as the true 'Patent era'. From my humble observations the Patent stamping on pipes from that time, was more apparent and attributable with some degree of accuracy. Peterson pipes made during the majority of this period had no "Country of Manufacture" (COM) stamped on them. However, later in this period, say around 1915/16, they began stamping their pipes "Made in Ireland" in a block format.

I must admit I am really into this particular period of Peterson's pipe production and the pipes that were produced during that era. When I go through the old catalogues, it is like being a big kid all over again,drooling over illustrations and line drawings of pipes which I long to hold and admire. I know ,go see a psychologist and get help,however I do not want help, I want the 'fine madness' to continue. Owning such pipes is like having access to time capsules.
Attached, are photos of examples of Peterson Patent pipes from my own collection.

1915 – 1949 Pre-Republic Era Pipes

The pre-republic Peterson's are often considered to be 'special'.They hark back to a time when quality briar was in abundance and craftsmanship was of the highest level.
Like all collecting desirables, pre-republic pipes now are relatively hard to come by, with availability declining with each passing year. The amazing thing that I find with pre-Republic's is the consistently high smoking qualities that they show,regardless of being a high or low grade issue. No it is not that I am looking through rose tinted glasses and being sentimental,they really were very well made. I base my judgement on owning and smoking quite a few of them.

1924 O Grade, Jim Lilley collection

For the purpose of this exercise,and bearing in mind the eccentric vagaries of Peterson

nomenclature,I am suggesting that an acceptable criteria or starting point for when the Pre Republic era begins and ends,requires a short historical resume.:-

The Irish Free State came into being in December 1922. The British sovereign, as King of Ireland, was nominal head of state, but Ireland was a republic in all but name.
An entirely new constitution was voted by the Irish people in 1937, with provision for a President Of Ireland as head of state. Therefore, Ireland became a republic in 1937, but was not called that. It was called simply EIRE (Ireland in Irish.)
When, in 1945, the British government inquired of prime minister Eamon de Valera weather he intended to proclaim a republic, his answer was: "we are a republic", having refused to say so before for eight years. This was news to the British: when George VI ascended the British throne in 1936, he had been crowned King of Ireland, as well, little knowing that there no longer was a Kingdom of Ireland!

Examples of Pre-Republic Era Petersons from the Jim Lilley Collection:

The Republic of Ireland Act of 1948 officially changed the name of the country to The Republic of Ireland.

As usual when trying to get accurate facts in regard to Peterson history,something will jump up and get in the way. They are missing many of their records. The following is the best that we can do for a guide to the myriad markings during the period 1922 – 1949.
Prior to 1920 it was rare for a country of origin to be stamped on the pipe, just Peterson's Dublin on the band. After 1921/22,If it is stamped "MADE IN IRELAND" and the "Made in" is stacked over "Ireland" or "MADE IN EIRE" or several other forms, it was made between 1922 and 1938. A considerable number of Peterson pipes were stamped "Irish Free State". From about 1930 to 1949, most of the pipes (those which were stamped) were stamped "Made in Ireland"." If the stamp reads "MADE IN IRELAND" in a circle, the pipe was made between 1939 and 1948. These are all "prerepublic" pipes. I can tell you that the mark "Irish Free State" was adopted in 1922;and replaced by "Eire" in 1937 and then by "Republic of Ireland" in 1949.

Phew! So there you have it. easy and straight forward,oh yeah!

Peterson initially graded their mass -produced System pipes, i.e., regular catalogue pipes (in descending order) "Deluxe," "First Quality," "0" grade, "2nd grade," and "3rd grade."
You will also find old Peterson Systems stamped System 4 or System 5. The shape number is also indicative of briar quality; for example,- 364 is Peterson's 3rd quality shape number (the 2nd quality sister pipe is a 314.)

More examples of Pre-Republic Era Petersons from the Jim Lilley Collection:

Sometime in the 1940s they introduced the "Premier" and "Standard" stampings. The "Premier" falling just under the "Deluxe," and the "Standard" becoming the former "2nd grade" quality.

The stampings on the silver bands are "faux" hallmarks and are just decorative symbols of Ireland ... a Shamrock,a wolfhound , and a castle or tower.

In regard to the silver and nickel markings of this period,well nu-ff said,it is a blooming minefield!

Hallmarks are only required on precious metals not nickel. Also a pipe made in England must meet English requirements which now (and for a number of years)are only 925 for sterling. This is an EU standard I believe. The shamrock, wolfhound and tower are not hallmarks. Dublin hallmarks for sterling are Hibernia, lyre and a letter denoting the year. They are still required for silver and gold in Ireland.
On the faux "hallmarks" v Dublin silver hallmarks. There are many Peterson pipes with sterling silver bands that do not have hallmarks though, even some in the Premier and Deluxe grades. Here is some additional information from my old friends Chuck Wright and Ed Mc Mullen that may help clarify.

Chuck quote:-

“I have many, many Petersons stamped "sterling silver" on the band that lack
hallmarks. There is no question about it. I don't know if it is silver-plated and still stamped sterling
silver or what. I have a pipe that is a System Premier stamped "sterling silver" but without
hallmarks. I am looking at it with a 15X loupe, and it never had any hallmarks. I have found if they
have the "K" & "P" in shields on the band, they often lack hallmarks.
it was my understanding that the sheets and tubes of silver were purchased by Peterson, stamped
with the maker's mark, and then sent to the assay office. The assay office then would return the
hallmarked tubes and sheets for the Peterson silversmiths to use”.

Ed quote:-

“I am only talking about Pre-Republic pipes made in Ireland; all of the Petersons made
in England I have with silver bands have London hallmarks on them.
Peterson know very little about the history of their pipes; I have spoken at length to Tom Palmer of
Peterson, and they just do not have records, or really much knowledge, about Peterson pipes prior
to 1980.
I own about 250 hallmarked Petersons dated between 1890 and 1939, and I have probably another
50 Pre-republic pieces that are stamped "Sterling Silver" but never had hallmarks. Oddly, almost
all of the old, hallmarked Petersons I own are not stamped "Sterling Silver." I also have maybe 100
Republic pieces that bear Dublin hallmarks, and just a few that are stamped 'Sterling Silver" but
have no hallmarks. Many of these are un-smoked, so there is no chance the hallmarks have worn
off. I think the inconsistency has something to do with the "Sterling Silver" stamp; I have an idea of
someone who will know the answer to this question.
You are correct about inconsistency being more the rule than the exception regarding pipe
nomenclature and stamping. I have been working on a guide for old Peterson pipes for several
years, and they changed their stampings and grading systems often, and offered many special
pieces and oddball lines, even in the old days. It is all part of the joy of collecting”.

I have included some photo examples from my humble collection of pre Republics. I hope you enjoy the viewing.

1895 – 1970 London Made Pipes

1962 Peterson Catalog (London Factory), Courtesy Jim Lilley

English made Peterson pipes actually spanned the period between the pre-Republic and Republic

eras. In 1895, Peterson opened a shop in London England that lasted until the late 1960s. So the English Era, for a simplified date, will be from 1895 through to around1970. The stamps Peterson used in London and that we have seen are:

  • Made in England - block format
  • Made in England - circle format
  • Made in London
  • Made in London England
  • Simply, London England
  • Great Britain

Though there are a couple of more, the above will give one the general idea. We believe the earliest stamp of this era was the "Made in England" in a block format since Peterson was using the "Made in Ireland" block format at about the same time on their Irish production pipes. The "Made in England" circle format was used during the same time frame as the "Made in Eire" and "Made in Ireland" circle formats.
As one can see this is pretty straightforward but there have been inconsistencies within this method of stamping. Peterson was never very energetic in removing their old stamps from the work stations so the older stamps can and did cross-over into the newer Era's.

Examples of London Made Pipes from the Jim Lilley Collection:

Some Peterson smokers in the know prefer the smoking quality of the Peterson London factory pipes over those produced in Dublin.

The London office and Factory was located at 74/77 White Lion Street. There is some speculation as to when it may have closed and stopped production.(80's?) I have copies of two English Peterson pipe catalogues,one is dated 1962 and the later one is dated 1965.
Here are some sample pipe photos from those London made pipes in my collection.

1950 – Present day

An Introduction to the modern Peterson Pipes

A Mark Twain 1985 Limited Edition Gold

As an avid Peterson pipe enthusiast and collector, I am amazed at how little has been written in the

past to chronicle the Peterson pipe history and the story of it's evolution. When I first started out with my obsessive interest in all things Peterson, I encountered major historical reference problems and like most enthusiasts,I was hungry for further dependable and accurate information which was just not there. Thanks to the dedication of the late Mike Leverette,a well known and respected expert collector of Peterson pipes, an attempt to rectify this historical anomaly was initiated in the early 2000's . Mike and some of his colleagues created the well known 'Peterson Pipe Project' web site, which cataloged the known early years in Peterson history and in particular a marvelous section on hallmarks and dating older pipes. Unfortunately this wonderful reference tool was never to reach its full potential development, as Mike sadly died in 2009, following a long period of illness.
I dedicate this compilation of modern Peterson references, respectfully to Mikes memory and hope that it is seen as being complimentary to Mike's main work.

I have adapted this section concentrating on post 1950,the made in the Irish Republic era and the different modern Peterson grades and series,which should bring us up to the present time period. The series groupings do not necessarily conform to those in evidence on the official Peterson web site. I have taken a certain amount of license in putting together groupings, which I feel are more appropriate. There are some inclusions that are a mixture of series which are either made for or are specific to Europe and the US markets.
I have also attempted to place an approximate retail purchase price/value against various pipe groups to give a guide to the novice collectors. These prices are in US dollars and will be updated periodically. It is also worth bearing in mind that estate values would be approximately 50% of those prices quoted,proportionately higher for rarer pipes such as the earlier editions of the Mark Twain series,which are currently averaging $300-$400 for the UN-numbered editions,to over $1000 for earlier low numbered gold banded editions.
My main aim is to help to clarify an otherwise chaotic Peterson history for other enthusiasts,especially the new Peterson pipe owner or collector.

Guide Listings of the Peterson modern series

Donegal Rocky Rustic 80s
Emerald XL90
Killarney 268
Killarney Ebony 999 shape
Kenmare 999
Sterling Silver B2

1950 onwards.- Made in the Republic of Ireland

The following lists and groupings are hopefully a tool to make it easier to come to terms with the huge array of Peterson's selection of modern pipes. I appreciate that their will no doubt be omissions from the list,however it should be considered a 'work in progress' project and further inclusions will be inserted as these become apparent.

Classic Range These are primarily the basic 'entry' level Peterson Pipes, which vary in price between $55 and $200.depending on finish i.e. smooth,sandblast,rustic and if any nickel or silverware etc.. These pipes will most certainly have some fills and slight flaws.

  • Aran
  • Captain Pete
  • Cara
  • Cashel,Rock of.
  • Castle
  • Celtic
  • Claddagh
  • Cork
  • Dalkey
  • Dingle
  • Donegal,Rocky.
  • Dublin
  • Dunmore
  • Elegant
  • Emerald
  • Fermoy
  • Flame Grain
  • Galway
  • Harp
  • Irish Made Army
  • Irish Whiskey
  • Kapet
  • Kapmeer
  • Kapruf
  • Kapp Royal
  • K Briar
  • Kelly
  • Kenmare
  • Kildare
  • Killarney
  • Kinsale
  • Laxiom(UK made in 1960's)
  • Limerick
  • Rosslare
  • Racing Green
  • Samhain
  • Shamrock
  • Shannon
  • Silver Mounted Army
  • Slimline
  • Tara
  • Trinity
  • Tyrone


Petersen System

System Pipes

Probably the most popular and famous range in the Peterson stables. All come with the famous P-lip stem. Prices start at around $80 for the basic standard and up to $400 for the large hand made House pipes.

  • Standard
  • Premier
  • Deluxe
  • Darwin
  • House
  • Original Mark Twain
  • New Mark Twain

A collection of System Pipes from the Jim Lilley collection:

Collections Usually these themed collections of pipes are boxed. They vary in price from the Ebony and Ivory at around $300 to $1000 for the River, 6 pipe set.

  • Antique collection
  • River collection
  • Irish sea collection
  • Mark Twain collection
  • Writers collection
  • Great Explorers collection
  • River collection
  • Castle collection

A collection of "Collection" Pipes from the Jim Lilley collection:

High Grades
The pipes in this range are amongst the best and most select briar's that Peterson produce. They vary in price from the Rosslare Royal Irish at around $150 to the Plato Freehand at $350.

  • Plato
  • Grafton
  • Rosslare Royal Irish
  • Royal Irish

High Grades from the Jim Lilley Collection:

XL23 Straight Grain

Straight Grains

Briar's are carefully examined for imperfections and selected briar's of exceptional grain, known as Straight Grains are carefully selected. They are hand crafted and the increasingly rare skill required to make them is unique. Craftsmen shape, turn, sand and polish 150 year old roots of the Erica arborea tree. Only a very limited quantity of Straight Grains are available in any twelve month period.
Prices start at around $400 going upwards.

Deluxe Silver Mounted
Made from superior quality briar, in golden smooth polished finish with hallmarked sterling silver bands. Available in most of the classic shapes, subject to the availability of quality briar.
Prices vary but start at around $145 and up to $250.

Supreme Gold & Silver Mounted
Exceptionally rich in grain, these pipes are made from the finest briar and are almost as rare as straight grains. Each pipe has a highly polished natural finish and is fitted with a slender gold or silver band. With Peterson lip or fishtail mouthpiece. Available in classic shapes subject to the availability of quality briar.
Prices can vary between $330 and $850.


Silver Windcap

Silver Caps & Lids
The union of top grade mellowed briar and hallmarked silver combine to make this truly beautiful series. Using the highest grade bowls, the silver work is done by hand and fits the cap to each individual pipe. Available in most classic shapes with a Peterson lip or fishtail mouthpiece. Peterson also offer Silver Caps with a unique hallmarked silver hinged lid which is custom made to fit each individual pipe.
Prices start around $300 and on up to $450.




B11 Silver Spigot

Spigots

The Peterson Spigot is characterised by a sterling silver covering on the tapered end of the mouthpiece which compliments the sterling silver band of the pipe. The Spigot style evolved from the practice of soldiers in earlier centuries who repaired broken pipes by sliding a used cartridge case over the shank and reinserting the mouthpiece. In this unique spigot finished pipe, Peterson craftsmanship perfect the union of finest quality briar and precious metals. The silver or gold is spun to shape and then fitted to the pipe.
Prices start at around $200 and rise to $800.



Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes Original

'Original collection' - The most successful series of pipes introduced by Peterson. First produced in

1987 to honour the most famous character in fiction, Sherlock Holmes. A 7 day set made from specially selected briar-wood in shapes most favoured by Holmes. Available in smooth, ebony, rustic and some sandblast. All extra large bowls. Sterling silver band. Peterson lip and fishtail mouthpiece.
Return of collection - Based on the success of the first series and made from specially selected briarwood in the time honoured Peterson tradition. All seven pipes are mounted with a hallmarked sterling silver band. Available with Peterson lip or fishtail mouthpiece.
Sherlock Holmes Meerschaum collection- Same seven shapes as the original collection.
Individual briar pipes start at around $200,with complete sets and rack at around $1500.
Individual meerschaum's start around $300 and complete sets plus rack at around $2000.

Examples of Sherlock Homes pipes from the Jim Lilley Collection:

Speciality

Smooth Tankard

Belgique and Calabash - Two petite and lightweight Peterson shapes crafted with all the care and

know how of century old pipe makers. From finest quality briar in red polish and rustic finishes with fishtail mouthpieces only.
Prices around $60 to $85.
Tankard & Barrel - Two attractively shaped pipes finished in red polish or rustic. A quality briar fitted with a nickel mount. Available with Peterson lip or fishtail mouthpiece.
Prices start from $45.
Churchwarden - One of the earliest pipe shapes and still remains popular. The overall length of the mouthpiece ensures a pleasant cool smoke, particularly suitable for an evenings relaxation. The Dublin, Billiard and Prince shapes come in smooth or rustic finish are available with long slender fishtail mouthpiece only.
Prices starting at $90.

Commemorative and Limited editions

Pair of Milleniums

Millennium - Dublin one of Europe's oldest capital cities celebrated its Millennium in the year 1988

and in honour, Petersons made a special tribute to the occasion, by creating prestige souvenir pipes known as "Peterson Dublin Millennium".These pipes are available in both an Oom Paul and a Dublin shape.
Prices are around $190 per pipe.

New Mark Twain – 2 pipe set in honour of the great Mark Twain. The bent one is a replica of the original 80's bent Mark Twain shape,which was produced for the American market only and attained cult status. The second pipe in the set is a poker shape, related to the Corn cob pipe that Huckleberry Finn used to smoke. The bent pipe is only available with the Peterson lip and the straight Poker is only available with a fishtail mouthpiece – they are sold as a boxed set. Finish in choices of Smooth,Rustic,Sandblast and Ebony.
Price estimated to be around $350 - $450 for the set,depending on finish.

Charles Peterson 140 Anniversary

Charles Peterson 140 Anniversary – in 2005 Peterson celebrated it's 140th anniversary. To mark the occasion, they decided to produce an exact copy of Charles Peterson´s favourite pipe. The original of this pipe is kept in the Peterson museum in Dublin and the silver band is engraved with

the massage;"When stolen, please return to 55. Grafton Street" and is signed by Charles Peterson.
Prices start around $280.

Pipes of the Year (2006 & 2008)

Pipes of the year - Each year Peterson's design and produce a select number of pipes in limited

numbers. These products are particularly directed at the pipe connoisseur who can recognise the characteristics of the product which is unique in its material, workmanship and styling.
Prices start at around $200.
4th July - Made for the US market to celebrate Independence Day.
Expect to pay around $100.

St. Patrick's Day

Saint Patrick's day - Each year Peterson launches a range of pipes to celebrate Ireland’s national

holiday when everyone in the world wishes to be Irish. Most years they gone with a very Irish colour – a shade of green.
Prices start around $80.

Ebony and Ivory - Ebony & Ivory 2-pipe set. One Bent meerschaum pipe and one straight ebony finished briar pipe in special presentation box, both with fishtail stems.
Price $320.

Fathers day - A classic pipe with a Walnut finish with matching ring. Available in selected classic shapes with fishtail mouthpiece only.
Price around $100

Christmas Pipe (2009)

Christmas Pipe – Commissioned by the American e-tailer 'Cup O' Joes', Peterson's first ever

Christmas pipe! Like the Peterson Year Pipe, a special limited edition, featuring a smooth finish, fishtail mouthpiece, and a Sterling Silver Band with a Christmas tree stamped on it. The bowl was stamped with the Peterson logo and "Christmas 2009".
Price around $150.
The new 2010 Christmas pipes are now available in the Classic shapes and can be sourced world wide, from approved Peterson distributors.

Why choose a Peterson Pipe?

Why choose a Peterson Pipe,what is so special about them when compared to other well known brands?

As a long time smoker of Peterson pipes I have found them totally dependable as basic smoking instruments.
I am willing to concede that we are all different in our tastes and choices,mine possibly being an extreme viewpoint of the Peterson brand. However in defence, my knowledge is based on years of ownership and experience of the myriad selection of pipes that Peterson have produced and are still producing.
I have had an extensive collection of other brands,including artisan pipes, in my collections over the years, with which to draw these comparisons. However for me Peterson pipes have a special place and attraction. Their historical elegance coupled to Celtic charisma and eccentricity adds to a massive world wide following and popularity. As well as being excellent everyday smoking pipes,they are also very collectible. Particularly the Patents, Pre-Republics and original Mark Twain's, all of which command reasonably consistent, estate prices at auction.

In my opinion Peterson pipes embody what is meant by "a good pipe." Their design, materials, history, and elegance convey a certain mystique that eclipses other brands. It's difficult to understand, but by smoking, or collecting Peterson pipes, a person can identify with times past, a time when quality and craftsmanship, were the norm and not the exception. From my years of ownership,here are some other good solid reasons to choose a Peterson pipe. :-

  • Historical provenance over 145 years and are eminently collectible.
  • Classical,simple elegant shapes.
  • Aesthetically pleasing and very tactile in the hand.
  • Value for money. Prices are competitive throughout their range.
  • Extensive choice of styles and shapes
  • Excellent consistent build and smoking qualities.
  • Strong world wide community of followers.
  • Excellent resale values.
  • Quality customer care and support.
  • System pipes eccentric quirky design and following.
  • Highly regarded attractive silver-work.
  • Innovation: they regularly come up with new series and design.

As I have stated previously, the huge World-wide number of contented Peterson pipe smokers is evidence enough and must be considered a great endorsement of the brand.


I often cringe at some of the negative comments made on popular pipe forums, in regard to the quality and finish of Peterson pipes. Inevitably it is the old story of a lack of knowledge or ownership of the extensive and varied choices in the range of pipes presented by Peterson. Often the negative comments are based on the writers limited experience of owning a basic entry level pipe. Thereafter they condemn all Peterson pipes, based on that poor experience.

I am privileged in that I have a good variety of both entry and higher grade Peterson Pipes within my collection. In my humble opinion, Peterson have been consistent throughout their production of higher end pipes, in replicating a tradition of Celtic quality, at very reasonable prices.

To be Continued
Peterson System Pipes

Contact Information:

E-mail mailto:sales@peterson.ie
Website