GBD 9438 For Lafond's Pipe Shop

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joeman

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Mar 6, 2016
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South Carolina
I know a good bit more than I used to about GBD...but thought I'd park this one here for you GBD historians.
LaFond's was a cigar shop, founded in Detroit, 1898. Later, they opened at least one additional site, known as Lafond's Pipe Shop. They sold Barlings, Dunhill, Peterson, GBD, more. The latest info I can find on Lafond's is an old newspaper ad from 1946...which brings me to the point.
This pipe below was made by GBD for Lafond's. It is stamped: Lafond's Vintage Algerian Briar (left), Made in France, 9438 (right). The stem is original, bearing the Lafond's 'L' trademark. Fattest saddle stem I've ever seen, and a very rounded, slotted button. My understanding is that slotted buttons were introduced in the 1920's, and I'm guessing this to be a fairly early one...but there are certainly GBD and vintage pipe experts who know more than I. Not critical that I narrow it down, but I'd like to. Thoughts?
(Pardon the late night, dusty mug-shots)








 

ssjones

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That's an interesting GBD. I wasn't familiar with that shop. Those French 9438's really have a stylized stem, unique to those stamped with that COM. Dating, probably close to impossible. The round (orific) buttons were from the 20's, this one is more ovalized. I have two, Mike Hagley said they were probably from the 40's to 50's, if memory serves.

 

gloucesterman

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Jan 4, 2015
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That style bit is usually associated with pipes produced in the 1950/60 range. The shank end of the bit is deeper than others of the type. I have a pair of pipes (9438, Speciale & Sablee)That have that exact same bit. They date to the early 1960s. Codogan made a lot of "Private Label" pipes during that period. The 9438 has for a long time been one of my favorites. They're just great smokers. Enjoy

 

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joeman

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Mar 6, 2016
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Al and Gloucesterman, thank you for your thoughts. Since I understand GBD's were all made in England as of 1950...I'm thinking this one being French made was made in the 40's...which is in keeping with what both of you have shared. And again, I can't find any sign of LaFond's beyond 1946. Appreciate it guys.

 

jguss

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Actually I think Lafond wasn’t shuttered until early 1981

 

ssjones

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Google didn't yield much, two threads on the Brothers of Briar forum, both answered by the same member, who frequented the shop (apparently there were two locations).

http://www.brothersofbriar.com/t12000-r-l-lafond-pipes-detroit-mi
And this:


 

doctorbob

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Mar 18, 2014
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Also, there is good evidence that GBD pipes were made in France, and marketed as such well past 1950.
Doc

 

glpease

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Jun 17, 2010
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joeman wrote:
Since I understand GBD's were all made in England as of 1950
In fact, French made GBDs were around at least through the mid- to late-70s, if not into the early 80s. The Paris factory closed in 1952, which often causes this confusion, but pipes still came out of St. Claude for years to come. One of my first GBDs was a France-made New Era squat bulldog purchased new at Whelans's Smoke Shop in Berkeley, ca. 1979.

 
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