St. Louis pen maker David Oscarson’s new Raoul Wallenberg collection of writing instruments goes beyond the typical pen used to create drama, intrigue, and even tragedy. The Raoul Wallenberg pen itself alludes to a story more chilling than most.
Oscarson’s latest collection isn’t the first to honor one’s doing. His previous editions include writing instruments in honor of scientist Alfred Nobel, botanist Carl Linnaeus, and Faberge jeweler Henrik Wigstrom- the subject of his very first pen.
Now, his Raoul Wallenberg line honors a Swede, as Oscarson is very proud of his Swedish heritage. Though the namesake collection was born in Sweden, he did the majority of his important work in Budapest, where he became a hero as he helped roughly 100,000 Jews escape from the Nazis during WWII.
Wallenberg was sent by the Swedish foreign ministry during the German occupation of the country, where he went on a mission to protect people from being deported to Nazi death camps. Robb Report notes that he did this by handing out false Swedish passports—called a Schutz-Pass—and converting a number of buildings into “protected houses” that flew the Swedish flag and used diplomatic protections to shelter refugees.
Though, things didn’t go quite as planned and unfortunately fate can be cruel. The man who protected so many from the Axis powers was arrested by Allied Soviet forces for suspicion of espionage. Since then he was never heard from again and was said to have passed away in prison in Moscow in 1947.
Oscarson’s new pen pays tribute to this remarkable man’s incredible humanity with an engraved reproduction on the cap of a Schutz-Pass, which saved so many from death, with Wallenberg’s face on it. The crown of the cap is emblazoned with a white Star of David, while its serpentine clip is meant to suggest the long and dangerous road that the Jews had to take to escape the Holocaust. The Swedish Three Crowns is presented on the base of the pen.
The Raoul Wallenberg collection is available in two color combinations, as well as either a rollerball or fountain pen. The rollerball is priced at $5,700, while the fountain pen is $5,9000. The version paired with a blue cap features a Star of David motif on its barrel, based on the windows of the Dohány synagogue in Budapest, while the white-capped version is engraved with a quote from Wallenberg in Swedish. The quote translates into “For me there is no other choice. I have undertaken this duty, and I would never be able to return to Stockholm without knowing within myself that I had done everything within human power to save as many Jews as possible.”