Albert Baker & Co - Bulldog

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klause

Preferred Member
Jul 9, 2012
554
0
In the last couple of years I've been beguiled by vintage briar, to the exclusion of all else - I have been like a love-sick school boy chasing after the school beauty, occasionally getting a glance from those beautiful eyes, enough to sustain me, to let me know she is aware of my existence, though untroubled by it. It has been a consuming, mainly one-sided, affair - taking what I can - being happy to get a smile, to be in the presence of that laugh, to feel the joy radiating from her soul, touching and warming all those in her presence.
So it has been with the old briars; they touch me, deeply, lighting my soul, and telling me stories of lives well lived, and times unknowable in the truest sense, taking me into deep, sustained reverie. They have enhanced my thoughts, and consequently my life, if not my wallet. But, recently I had an epiphany - the spell was shattered, splintered into a million pieces in a blistering, blinding moment of insight. The Danes had returned, marauding across my horizon, enticing me to adventure, to open my eyes and look afresh at the world, to see the innovation, the elegance, beauty, and art of the new carvers - I'd always known this, but had been distracted by a classical beauty as old as time (or so it seemed).
I am no longer looking for old briar - I have enough, for a number of lifetimes - I will admire it when I see it, and maybe, just maybe, linger a little longer than is gentlemanly in its presence, but I will let it go, to another, mojo will be equally appreciative of its charms. However, I have a couple still i transit, and one arrived on Friday. I thought I would not be as enamoured of its charms now that I was released from my mental captivity, but I was wrong.
The pipe in question is a magnificent Bulldog (a shape that I admire, and enjoy smoking - a true classic, if ever there was one), made by Albert Baker & Co. It is in near pristine condition. The previous owner cared for it greatly; externally clean, a well maintained cake, a relatively untouched rim, the merest hint of a tooth mark on the orific stem, and internally spotless. The owner, loved this pipe, as it is well smoked, but treated gently.
I knew it was big, but the actuality of it was a surprise to me. It is huge, not quite magnum size, but not far off. It fits the hand nicely, settling in like it was always meant to be there. It is quite beautiful - at first, in picture form, I thought it may be a little ungainly, but in reality it's elongated lines are elegance incarnate. It knows it. There is a confidence about this pipe, not just from its size enabling it to shoulder in to any company, but from the knowledge that it is of perfect form, like the school beauty, at least to the eyes of those that follow her every move. So it is with this pipe. But it is not the teasing over confidence that can mar beautify, it is the quiet, gentle confidence and strength that enhances beauty, draws the eyes, and captivates the heart; that knows you are caught in a spell, but does not do anything that may hurt you - why would it? It's sole purpose is to make you smile, and bring joy, and happiness into your life.
This pipe does that, to no small degree.

The other pipes are standard sized (WHC in the centre, and no-name at bottom), for an idea of scale. The photo doesn't really show how big it is - it's 6 3/4 inches long.


 

buroak

Preferred Member
Jul 29, 2014
1,858
0
klause, That is a very attractive old Bulldog and, as usual, an enjoyable write-up. Is that an amber stem?

 

misterlowercase

Preferred Member
May 31, 2012
4,296
1
Incapable of elaborate response at the moment due to the overwhelming awe of your incredible presentation and writing skills.
8O

:!:
WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

okiescout

Preferred Member
Jan 27, 2013
1,530
0
Klause, you have a wonderful ability to communicate with words. That dog is a strong looking pipe. Happy puffs.

 

newbroom

Preferred Member
Jul 11, 2014
5,493
8
Let's all hope you continue to show us your wares in similar fashion, even if they're not new acquisitions.

Or..whatever part of our pursuits you happen to feel like expounding upon will work.

Heck of a pipe. I hope also, that MLC can provide the history of this pipe, maybe?

 

misterlowercase

Preferred Member
May 31, 2012
4,296
1
I hope also, that MLC can provide the history of this pipe, maybe?
That would be Jon Guss's realm of expertise,

if anyone can shed any light,

it would be him.
I can however,

enhance the visual record,

so here's a few pretty pictures...



Old tins pop up sometimes too,

they are quite scarce and highly sought after.

Rare birds they are...

- - - - - Rare Old A. Baker & Co Great Auk Cigarette Tin - - - - -

That tin sold for $310 in March of this year!
Some pix...



Here's a rather interesting mention amidst the Great Tobacco War...
And finally,

here's a pic of Newgate Street and King Edward Street EC2,

Albert Baker & Co tobacconist shop on the corner,

circa 1931.

 

settersbrace

Preferred Member
Mar 20, 2014
1,565
0
WOW!
MLC first puts up all these old adverts of the Albert Baker Co. (In fine fashion I might add) and then just a day off two later Klause produces the best looking of the AB line, the Bulldog!
I smell a conspiracy!

 

settersbrace

Preferred Member
Mar 20, 2014
1,565
0
My bad, for some reason I thought the adverts Troy posted the other day were for Albert Baker Co. See what happens when I don't have my glasses on?
Exquisite pipe none the less.

 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
14,184
174
Maryland
That was Allen & Wright.
What a beautiful Bulldog, from a maker of which I have no familiarity. Read and learn.
I'll miss these kind of posts if you really have taken a hiatus from old briar!

 

klause

Preferred Member
Jul 9, 2012
554
0
Buroak, sorry for not getting back sooner - but, yep! That's amber - quite the lump, too.
Troy, as always, you bring a your enthuasiasm to the show, and enlighten us all - thanks, very much - its greatly appreciated.
Gent's I appreciate the comments - thank you.
Just so you know, this pipe smokes magnificently - it was made for an armchair and uninterrupted contemplation - its a lightening rod for thoughts and imagination.
I'm keeping it.

 

4nogginsmike

Preferred Member
Aug 20, 2013
1,043
0
klause the condor lover, condor bombardier, and antique briar chow hound. Very classy. I love the middle pipe in the second photo for what I take to be the silver extensions of the ring.