"This book is dedicated to the pens of Chr. Olsen Fabrikker, Kobenhavn, Denmark. Their better-known brand is the Penol line developed and produced exclusively by Chr. Olsen, the distributor of Parker in Denmark.
It may seem strange that two doctors from opposite sides of the Atlantic have collaborated on a book about the history and manufacture of a brand of Danish pens. In fact, on many occasions over the past several, independently from the another, both of them had the opportunity to travel to Denmark. During their visits, they took some of their time to search the world of antique (antik) stores and flea markets (loppemarkeds, kraemmermarkeds) throughout Zealand, Funen, and the Jutland peninsula of Denmark, where they often came across a brand of pens called Penol, that, despite their attractive appearance, did not seem to interest local fountain pen collectors.
When Joao began collecting Penol, they were plentiful in Denmark and available at very reasonable prices; Michael was not so lucky, having arrived on the scene nearly a decade later. Both authors began buying Penol pens, first as a curiosity, and later as an obsession. As their Penol collectors grew, they reached the next level of collecting that included researching the company's history, its development, and pen production.
While trying to find additional about Penol, both authors soon realized that no literature was available concerning this brand, and the few collectors who were familiar with the Penol name recognized it as a company that produced high quality pens, that was connected with the Danish Parker distributor, but no information was available models nor about their production dates, even within the fountain pen circuit of seasoned collectors.
The search for information about Penol revealed the fascinating aspect of pen collecting corresponding to tracing the history of a company. Again, since there were no knowledgeable collectors of Penol pens, the quest for information was difficult. Furthermore, living in Lisbon, Portugal, and in Omaha, Nebraska, several thousand kilometers away from Denmark, and not speaking nor reading Danish further hindered their task of acquiring information about this Danish company. But, using their research and scientific skills, armed with persistence and a Danish-English dictionary, as well as friends in Denmark, the quest was on.
Both authors had the opportunity to visit the Penol factory at Emdruvej 28A. Joao, through Poul Lund, met with Lars Janssen and saw some of the technical drawings that were used in production, some of which are reproduced in this book. Although undated, these drawings, together with the knowledge already obtained about the company, lead to a further understanding of Penol pen model evolution, Joao, through a fellow Portuguese pen collector, Antonio Gagean, exchanged letters with the managing director of the company that produced Penol, Klavs Olsen, who provided valuable information about the early years of the company and about the reasons that lead to the production of Penol. Michael met with Thomas Christian Olsen to discuss the history of the company.
It is indeed surprising that a small company, in a small country, and in a very troubled economic and social period (the Depression and the Second World War) was able to produce such a variety of high quality pen and pencil models.
This book is far from being complete since many of the original Penol records have been lost in time, and unfortunately there are not many people alive with information about the company. This book may contain gaps and certainly some erroneous information."