Thompson Pipes????

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7charb

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Sep 13, 2019
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Guerneville, CA
I stumbled on to a pipe that has impressed me. Thompson. Initially, I found a Thompson pipe commissioned by an American company known as, Thompson Cigar Company. They have a following and a fine reputation. I assumed the Thompson pipe I had acquired was a Thompson Cigar Company pipe. I was wrong. In fact, I had purchased a "Norm Thompson" (only designated as "Thompson") : out of England. Norm Thompson (a B&M tobacco shop in England) had pipes commissioned as well. Both Thompsons were old school B&Ms that had pipes manufactured by reputable pipe makers. From what I have ascertained, Thompson Cigar Company had a lot of free-hands made. Norm Thompson (England) had more traditional English pipe-shapes made (makes sense). Thompson-USA display the name "Thompson" in cursive. Thompson-England display Thompson in block letters. Both Thompsons get rave views from those who own them. You can still find them for reasonable prices on EBeast. Here is an example of a Thompson-England I recently restored:

BEFORE:
8103

AFTER:
810581068104
 

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snagstangl

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Jul 1, 2013
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Wait for it.... I have a Norm Thompson catalog. It has dunhill's, charatans, factory pipes from different countries stamped THOMPSON. Along with tobacco's. The catalog is something else. There is a few people listed in the catalog who are testing the pipes for them, doing things like taking them on safari. It is a pipe and tobacco mail order catalog for the 60's Renaissance man and is 30 or better pages long.
 

hoppes

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Mar 15, 2017
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A USA Norm Tompson was started in Portland, Oregon. Here's a brief history:
The company was founded by namesake Norman Anchor Thompson, Sr. in 1949 as a way to sell his homemade flies for fly-fishing.[6][7] An immigrant from Britain, he had settled in Salt Lake City before fighting for Canada in World War I.[7] After the war he lived briefly in Los Angeles before settling in Portland where he owned seven pipe shops and later two nightclubs during World War II.[7] Thompson retired after the war as owner of the nightclubs and tobacco shops.[6]
He started the new business as a mail order only business by placing an advertisement in Field & Stream,[8] and around 1951 handed it over to Peter Alport, his son-in-law.[6][7] Alport was in advertising in New York City where he owned Parma Advertising.[6] He worked to expand the company's product offerings beyond fly-fishing items and into clothing and other outdoor merchandise, plus he developed the company's slogan of Escape from the ordinary.[6] During his tenure, Norm Thompson opened its first retail store in 1959, located in Northwest Portland.[6] Namesake Norm Thompson died in 1968 from complications related to his exposure to mustard gas during his World War I military service in Europe.[7]
A unique pipe with lots of history !
 

7charb

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2019
1,063
2,804
Guerneville, CA
Wait for it.... I have a Norm Thompson catalog. It has dunhill's, charatans, factory pipes from different countries stamped THOMPSON. Along with tobacco's. The catalog is something else. There is a few people listed in the catalog who are testing the pipes for them, doing things like taking them on safari. It is a pipe and tobacco mail order catalog for the 60's Renaissance man and is 30 or better pages long.

Amazing. That is a memento for sure.
 

7charb

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2019
1,063
2,804
Guerneville, CA
A USA Norm Tompson was started in Portland, Oregon. Here's a brief history:
The company was founded by namesake Norman Anchor Thompson, Sr. in 1949 as a way to sell his homemade flies for fly-fishing.[6][7] An immigrant from Britain, he had settled in Salt Lake City before fighting for Canada in World War I.[7] After the war he lived briefly in Los Angeles before settling in Portland where he owned seven pipe shops and later two nightclubs during World War II.[7] Thompson retired after the war as owner of the nightclubs and tobacco shops.[6]
He started the new business as a mail order only business by placing an advertisement in Field & Stream,[8] and around 1951 handed it over to Peter Alport, his son-in-law.[6][7] Alport was in advertising in New York City where he owned Parma Advertising.[6] He worked to expand the company's product offerings beyond fly-fishing items and into clothing and other outdoor merchandise, plus he developed the company's slogan of Escape from the ordinary.[6] During his tenure, Norm Thompson opened its first retail store in 1959, located in Northwest Portland.[6] Namesake Norm Thompson died in 1968 from complications related to his exposure to mustard gas during his World War I military service in Europe.[7]
A unique pipe with lots of history !

Thanks for this info. Having history on a pipe you are fond of just makes the experience of smoking it that much better.
 

7charb

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Sep 13, 2019
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Guerneville, CA
Just happened to find the siblings of my Norm Thompson. Hilarious, right? Just restored these 3. Hard to date these, but probably made between 1940-early 60s. Tried the nose warmer out last night. Super impressed.

882688278828
 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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My smooth Thompson freehand I'm pretty sure is a house pipe from the Thompson Cigar Company, and it is further stamped West Germany, which puts it in a specific window of time. It was a gift, and had a P-lip type stem that oxidized so quickly, I had it replaced with an acrylic tortoise shell fishtail which looks great. It's a nice pipe with an especially generous bowl.
 
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7charb

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2019
1,063
2,804
Guerneville, CA
My smooth Thompson freehand I'm pretty sure is a house pipe from the Thompson Cigar Company, and it is further stamped West Germany, which puts it in a specific window of time. It was a gift, and had a P-lip type stem that oxidized so quickly, I had it replaced with an acrylic tortoise shell fishtail which looks great. It's a nice pipe with an especially generous bowl.

mso, from my understanding Thompson Cigar Company pipes are more reputable than Norm Thompsons. I also really appreciate the history of your West German Thompson. Perhaps I stumbled on to a particularly good batch of Norm Thompsons. However, I will be keeping an eye out in the future for a Thompson Cigar Company pipe based on your experience with your pipe. If I ever see a West German Thompson Cigar Company pipe, I am jumping on it!
 
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