Follow penciltalk on twitter!

Blackfeet Indian Pencils

The classic Blackfeet Indian Pencil.
The Blackfeet Indian Pencil is a unique creation. It is a quality pencil that has a varnished natural wood encasing that was years ahead of others in recognizing that the natural beauty of wood grain could be embraced by the public, if presented properly. The varnish is thick and polished – it doesn’t look like (and isn’t) something one would find at a generic office supply store.

The original had black imprinting with a small horse and rider logo, and the words “THE BLACKFEET INDIAN PENCIL” and the digit 2 for the lead hardness. There is a silver ferrule and light pink eraser. It writes nicely and the lead doesn’t crumble or splinter. A later version had a black ferrule and dark pink eraser. Unfortunately, this later version doesn’t maintain the quality of the classic version – the varnish is thinner, making the pencil less pleasant to hold, and the black ferrule doesn’t match the pencil as well, and can distract the eye.

The pencils were made in Browning, Montana by the Blackfeet Indian Writing Company as part of a tribal owned economic initiative. I gather up to a hundred people may have been employed at the company’s peak, but it sadly appears to have been dormant the last few years.

92 comments to Blackfeet Indian Pencils

  • Neal

    This is a great pencil. I found a partial box while emptying a drawer. I closely guard this pencil and left the remainder of the box at home. The sole pencil is now on my desk at work. It is wonderful to have it back. What a great piece of workmanship. Too bad they “sold out” and now this product is not available to me. Thank you for making such a great piece of office “equipment.”

    I’m in Georgia.

  • Vin

    Who did the Blackfeet Indian Writing Co. “sell out” to?

  • Lewis

    I found at a flea Market a box and 5 Blackfeet Indian pencils.Box is in great condition, pencils have been sharpened. I would like to sell.


  • myra hamilton

    Do you still have the pencils and what are you asking for them?
    To Lewis from Myra Hamilton

  • I just found three of these in a bunch of old pencils someone gave me. I’m torn between saving them and sharpening them for use…

  • Use one, save one, and leave the third for future consideration? :-)

  • Heather

    Hi everyone, I have 1 box of “The Blackfeet Indian Pencil” and 3 boxes of “Vector Pencils” they are marked with gold letters “Blackfeet Indian Writing Company” and come in the same box as the “Blackfeet Indian Pencils” but I can’t find any information on Vector pencils on the internet. Can anyone help me with any information on these pencils.

  • David O.

    Vector is a good question. This link is a nice summary, but no Vector:

  • Pisces6

    I believe Vector is the name of the pencil, not the name of the brand just as Blackwing is a pencil’s name.

    Example: Visit, click on the “Blackfeet Indian Writing Co.” link, and then scroll down to the Vector 001-04.

    A direct link:

  • Heather

    Thanks for the links guys! I have a much better understanding of the pencils now. The Vector 001-04 in the link is close to mine, the only differnce is the lead hardness and the rims.

  • Edwin

    i have 4 cedar boxes, complete sets of #2pencils and 6 boxes also containing # 2 pencils of the blackfeet indian pencils, anyone interested in buying email me @

  • The Reverend

    Just came across this site. I have two full boxes of these pencils. I have been using them for the last 10 years, not realizing their importance and want for collectors. I have now wrapped them up in clear wrap and they are sitting on my nick nack shelf. I do have mor in my cellar and will look for them next week and wrap them up too.

  • Nancy

    I found a box of Swagger Stick pens manufactured by the Blackfeet Indian Writing Company when I cleaned out my parent’s house. The box is cardboard and has a picture of A Fantasy from the Pony War Dance by Frederic Remington. There are 8 black pens left in the box. Some do not write and some do faintly. I don’t think they are used just probably dried out. Does anyone know anything about the pens made by this company?

  • Lynn Shepodd

    Blackfoot pencils are the best wooden pencils I haev ever used. I would like to buy more.
    Anyone know where to go?

  • David O.

    My understanding is that the original production line is long gone. The only chance would be to try to get some on ebay, etc. I heard that some newer ones were being made, but they weren’t the same.

  • David O.

    I scored a nice amount of older Eberhard Faber American 2 HB pencils from a seller using the classifieds on this site:

    You can also post in the “seeking pencils” section.

  • Does anyone know anything about the Buckskin line? I’m awaiting a delivery of some from an ebay seller and don’t know much about them except they’re painted and by the Blackfeet Indian Writing Company.

  • chris latrell

    I have recently purchased some of the Blackfeet Indian pencils (yellow 027-29) and would like to know what they are worth. There are six boxes with a dozen in each. Any info. would be appreciated.
    I would be interested in selling them. Thank you.
    Christopher L

  • Karen Bennett

    I am listed a sealed package of 6 dozen Blackfeet Indian Pencils on ebay within the next couple of days. They are the last of these pencils from my artist supplies that I am selling. Today is May 12 2012. I don’t know if I am allowed to post this on your board or not. I do want these to go to someone who will appreciate them.

  • Lynn Shepodd

    How much are you asking for the 6 dozen?


  • Karen Bennett

    I have 5 dozen left. I have them listed at 9.99 with a buy it now price of 21.99. I had them up with a start price of 9.99 for a start price for all of them, but no one bid on them, so I decided to sell them in the one doz boxes rather than as a group.

  • Are they already sold? I can’t find them.

  • Karen Bennett

    As of 11:30 PM EST Tuesday May 15 2012 they were still there. Listed as
    12 VINTAGE #2 pencils Tru-Arrow Pencils from Blackfeet Indian Writing Company
    ebay item 251063242973
    Thanks, Gunther

  • Thank you, Karen, but since I live in Germany eBay doesn’t allow me to buy them now. I am very interested in them so I would be very happy if you could change the shipping location (I can also name you an address in the US).

  • Karen Bennett

    You can reach me by asking a question through ebay about any of the items I have up for bid. I will change the shipping location to international, it shouldn’t change the shipping much to ship first class international. Thanks for pointing that out, my error.

  • Thank you, Karen. I have tried to ask you a question via eBay but it didn’t work; anyway, the pencils are now sold.

  • Karen Bennett for Gunther

  • thomas hamilton

    I have six dozen blackfeet indian pencils from the Blackfeet Indian Writing Co., Blackfeet Industrial Park, Browning Montana 59417
    product code 100-2
    mediun soft (no.2)
    they are still wrapped in the original six dz.package
    bidding starts at 72.00 dollars
    shipping is free
    phone 218-335-8055

  • […] would like to thank Sean for the Blackfeet Indian Pencil seen on the last photo. They aren’t really holes, but I’m not sure what to call them so […]

  • Audrey Hamilton

    I had no Idea these pencils were no longer manufactured.I went to a consignment shop two days ago and i found a box of the Blackfeet Indian Pencils,#2with the rider and pony.Box of ten ,already sharpened. The box is in very good condition and has the rider on a pony,adapted from pony war dance by Frederic Remington written on the side.The ferruls are black with a pink eraser. I bought them as i am an artist an had i known what they were i would not have used one to write with.I purchased the box of ten for one dollar.

  • Sam

    I find these pencils to be comperable and relatively inexpensive at $11 for three dozen. It is good to read all of these comments.

  • Reverend

    @Sam…Your missing the point! The pencils you call comparable do not have the history and importance to the Blackfeet Indian Pencils. The Blackfeet Indian Pencils was a company started up and run by the Blackfeet Indians, true Native Americans. When it closed down it was a part of their culture lost, along with an excellent product.

  • Larry

    I found two boxes of these pencils in my basement both have all twelve pencils inside and one of the boxes is in a wood case. I am interested in selling these!

  • Lynn

    Blackfeet pencils are great. I
    Just yesterday I found a fistful from the 70’s when my nephew was selling them in elementary school.
    Do not toss them. They are good for writing and better yet sketching.
    Congrats on finding some.

  • Dawn

    My husband a retired professor was cleaning out his office and gave me a box of these Blackfeet pencils. I did not recognize the name, but recognized the quality instantly. I told my husband you can’t buy pencils like this any where in the world. These may even be the last of there kind. Excited about what I found I search the internet and was delighted to find others that appreciate the quality of these very special pencils. I too will enjoy one and protect the rest.

  • Z

    Weird – everywhere I’ve looked, people say The Blackfeet Indian Pencil only existed with a silver or black ferrule. I have a pretty old box of them, definitely genuine, and the ferrule is GOLD. Anyone know about this?

  • I too have Blackwing Tru-Arrow pencils which have a gold ferrule with a brown lacquer ring. However, I don’t have any details about them.

  • Oops – of course it should read “Blackfeet Tru-Arrow”.

  • susan

    i am interested in buying Blackfeet Indian pencils. A few years ago I had a set and loved them. This would be for my personal use so if any of the folks on here that are noting they have pencils they would like to sell, please email me at Thanks!

  • Dan Stevens

    I have a box of 12. Blackfeet Indian Acrylicolor Pencils. Carmine red. 2 were sharpened once. I would sell for $20 (plus add shipping).

  • Greg

    I have 6 of them brand new in a box

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>