These are all vintage replica inks that exhibit classic period ink behaviors with mild (when compared to our modern bulletproof and eternal inks) water resistance upon the page (particularly after the passage of time, a week or so or more upon the page will increase the ability to resist water). Please bear in mind these are classic style inks and will NOT exhibit the durability of the more modern eternal and bulletproof lines…as none resist the rays of the sun nor many of the chemical tools of the forger. As inks of the era they would have most certainly been classed as being “permanent” by the industry of that time. Government issue v-mail inks would have most closely resembled “Dark Matter”, though the bright colors of the “V-Mail” series replicate inks of the era that had similar labeling themes relating to the conflict that spanned all oceans and all continents.
The story of a vintage ink reborn…
A large size “Boston Round” with sharp shoulders (indicative to this vintage ink collector of a possible – though not certain – upper Midwest connection, as the “master” school and business/office bottles made there often had distinctively sharp curves on the shoulders of their “Boston Round” bottles) – arrived at Noodler’s Ink in Massachusetts from a resident of Chicago. The gentleman states he was an employee at “a much older undisclosed location” and is an admirer of our inks. He wants the bottle back, if we would be so kind – but also a bottle of any ink we can make that replicates its contents as payment for providing us with such a marvelous piece of history. We replicated the ink as closely as possible with current, fresh and modern materials…and the return of the bottles met with his approval. We also sent him a pen, of course.
Do we always put such effort into a bottle of vintage ink that randomly appears in the mail box? No. Sometimes, however….when it is rare or unusual, we certainly do – as this bottle had upon it a deceptively simple label: “U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, LA NM BLK WF 43” The label was incredibly small for such a large bottle of ink. However, knowing master bottles of similar shape and size that had been made by the major ink companies of the era – this was actually not unusual. School system and government office ink bottles also routinely had such small labels. Commercial labels were always much larger (as I have always said, the art of labels is part of the craft and should of course be done with Noodler’s Ink!).
We were given enough information to conclude it was the genuine: the ink of Los Alamos, New Mexico…cir. Mid-1940s, “Project Y”- the Manhattan Project. Better still, it could be successfully rehydrated and replicated.
It has been named “Dark Matter” and has an image of the leading scientist of the Manhattan Project upon the label – with his most famous quote imprinted upon his image. The ink could be distinguished between other inks of the era with a variety of tests – yet it was a very conventional ink and though water resistant, is not completely waterproof (though at the time it would have certainly been classed as being “permanent”). If you wrote a document while sequestered at Los Alamos during “the project”….apparently, you even had to use the right kind of ink when not using a pencil or bit of chalk…
MSRP $12.50/3 Oz. Bottle