Post Office Directory Novelty Inkwell

Post Office Directory Novelty Inkwell


A red leather on brass, novelty travel inkwell in the form of a Post Office London Directory of 1902.

The title of the book is stamped in gilt to its spine, which is also the lid. Below the title it is also stamped '103D Edition' and 'London, Kelly's Directory Limited. 182 High Holborn, W.C.'

Kelly's Directories first appeared in 1935/36 when Frederic Kelly became chief inspector of letter-carriers for the general post office. The Post Office London Directory was published by his predecessor in the job, who held the private copyright. Kelly purchased the copyright from his widow and built up the Directory business from there. The name stamped to this inkwell was first used in 1897 when the business name changed from Kelly & Co Ltd to Kelly's Directories Ltd. The company continued until the end of the 20th century.

The lid of the inkwell is held by a spring catch which is released by a hidden button. The glass inkwell sits on a spring, pushing it up against a sprung pad to the interior of the second, internal lid to form a seal. Although there is evidence of use and wear to the edges of the leather covering the brass etc. the detail to the inkwell is good. A gilt Royal coat of arms is stamped to the front cover of the book and there is also blind tooling to the edge. Lines to simulate pages are tooled to the light brown leather.

This is an unusual form of novelty inkwell with added interest in that it is titled as known publication with a set date. Dated 1902.


Height 6.35 cm / 2 "
Width 3.17 cm / 1 "
Depth 6.35 cm / 2 "

Dated 1902


Leather on brass with glass




Novelty Inkwell

Furnishing The Empire

Small patch to missing leather. Some wear to the leather at the edges etc.