Our friends over at Pencil Talk have a wonderfully detailed feature on the A. W. Faber Polygrade Lead Pencil set. What a gorgeous set and a wonderful bit of history.
The Pencil, A History of Design and Circumstance by Henry Petroski, has many references to this pencil. Two chapters in particular are relevant. Chapter 6, “Does One Find or Make a Better Pencil?”, discusses the history of pencil construction, and Chapter 11, “From Cottage Industry to Bleistiftindustrie”, focuses on the establishment of the pencil industry, driven by the Faber family and products such as the Polygrade.
(via pencil talk)