Tracy Mincer started the original Custom-Bilt pipe company in 1934. In 1946, the name was changed to Custombilt after Mincer began an association with Eugene J. Rich, Inc. There were some big changes in advertising and distribution. The slogan "AS INDIVIDUAL AS A THUMBPRINT" began at this time as well.
In the early 1950’s, Tracy Mincer developed severe financial problems that caused him to stop making the Custombilt, and he lost the name. n 1952, Mincer began a new pipe, The Doodler, that due to the holes in the bowl had to made primarily in a billiard type shape in three sizes. In the early 1950s, National Briar was turning the bowls for Mincer. Based upon the documentation, it appears that Mincer made the pipe until the mid 1960s, when National Briar Pipe Co., Inc. began making and selling the Doodler.
Mincer died in 1964. Based upon the information provided, Mincer seemed to always have money, production, distribution and other problems. Mincer was probably a terrific craftsman but a very poor businessman and administrator. To me, Mincer sounds like your typical small business entrepreneur who always knew what was right and if you disagreed¼problems. Mincer always seemed to be on the brink of going out of business, not meeting payroll and so on.
Claude Stuart purchased the Tracy Mincer Pipe Company and began making pipes using the Tracy Mincer stamp. Stuart finished nearly all the pipes produced, mostly carved and textured bowls and the occasional straight grain. Claude made the Tracy Mincer Pipe Company a moderate success. Stuart became ill and in 1990 The Tracey Mincer Pipe Company went out of business. Currently, Jim Tedesco owns the Tracy Mincer name.
These interesting examples bellow are pipes made with the Tracy Mincer stamp. If you any additional information about these pipes, or can otherwise add to the history of this interesting pipe man, please add it here, or send it to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can add it for you.