USA Made

The Eight Best American Made Pencils

These #2's are #1

The humble pencil has been one of our most essential writing tools for centuries. The discovery of large quantities of graphite gave rise to this implement in 1564 and it's been an instrumental ally for writers, accountants, and schoolchildren ever since. But while the pencil's origins trace all the way back to 16th century Europe, the settlers to this country began making their own pencils in Concord, Massachusetts in 1812 and many companies in the good ol' red, white, and blue continue that tradition today. These eight pencils are the best of the best when it comes to pencils made in the USA.

1. General Pencil Company Cedar Pointe No. 2 Pencil

General's pencil is designed to stay sharper longer, without the need to stick it in a sharpener over and over again to keep a good writing point. These pencils are manufactured in the United States, from California incense cedar. These pencils are graded HB, the H stands for “hard” and the B signifying “black”. Together it means you're getting a graphite lead that is harder and writes in a dark shade for a pencil that is fully waxed and bonded in accordance with the highest standards for quality. Simply put, this is a resilient and long-lasting pencil that is perfect for any job.

2. Cra-Z-art No.2 Yellow Pencils

Cra-Z-Art America offers up a pencil crafted from real cedar wood sourced from the forests of the United States. These are also rated HB on the graphite scale and designated with a #2 rating for hardness. You've likely heard of a #2 pencil, but you may not know that it means it has a softer core than pencils with higher number ratings. When the pencil's core is softer that results in a darker mark being made on the paper. That's why #2 is the most commonly used type of pencil. These pencils will also sharpen to a fine point without splintering or shattering the lead. Even more important, the eraser completely removes your mistakes without smudging or smearing, unlike erasers made of lesser quality materials.

3. Prospector Natural #2 School Pencils

This pack of Prospector #2 pencils is the ideal choice for kids heading back to school since these are the precise specifications that are preferred for taking tests that require the use of pencils only. But they're not just great for taking tests, they're a great choice for drawing and sketching, taking notes, and working on complex mathematical problems where figures must be written and rewritten. Each pencil is manufactured for a soft, natural finish and sharpens nice and tight for a perfect point every time. You have two choices of color, natural and green

4. Golden Bear Blue #2 Pencils

Golden Bear's #2 pencil offers a high quality hard graphite core with your choice of blue or orange exterior finishes. These writing implements are sourced from incense cedar wood grown in California and they come with the prestigious PMA seal certifying that the pencil adheres to ASTM D4236 or EN71, part 3 standards. That's important because it certifies that the pencil is free from all potentially hazardous toxic lead materials in the core and surface coatings used to finish the pencil. The Golden Bear pencil is a useful addition to any home, office, classroom, or anywhere else that pencils are found.

5. 100 Test Scoring Pencil

Speaking of test-taking, some pencils are just better than others when it comes to making your mark on a test, particularly those that are scored through electronic machines. These pencils from Musgrave are designed for just that purpose, built to be easily detected by the technologically advanced scanners that are being employed by today's testing companies. What makes these stand out above the rest is the electro-graphite core that leaves an ultra-reflective mark on your paper, noticeable with infrared and the human eye alike. This package contains 12 pencils but you can find them in boxes of 100.

6. Write Dudes Pencils

Any brand named USA Gold must be exceptional and, in the case of this pack of #2 pencils, the name is apt. These are the gold standard of American made pencils, using responsibly sourced American cedar wood and latex-free erasers to ensure that you can erase the mistakes thoroughly and completely, without a trace of your previous writing left behind. A bonded graphite core ensures that every mark is made dark and smooth with a point strength that has been engineered for grace under pressure. Those of you who like to write hard, the days of your pencil point snapping in mid-sentence are over.

7. Write Dudes USA Gold Natural Wood #2 Pencils

These pencils from The Write Dudes also bear the USA Gold name and they are manufactured in Lewisburg, Tennessee. They have #2 HB rated graphite cores, bonded for high point strength and earned the PMA certification for the absence of lead and other toxic materials in any of the pencil's components. They've also earned the Forest Stewardship Council certification for sourcing the California incense cedar wood from sustained yield resources. These pencils are available in boxes of 10, 12, 24, 48, and 96 count.

8. Cross Classic Century

We close out the list with a little something different. Mechanical pencils are an ideal alternative for anyone who doesn't like the hassle of having to sharpen their point over and over. Simply click a few times to get the point you want and you're ready to write and when it comes to pens and pencil sets, few companies deliver higher quality than Cross. The Classic Century Satin Burgundy Pen and Pencil Set offers two writing implements with a satin burgundy finish and polished chrome detailing for a pair of writing utensils that will be cherished forever. As for forever, Cross offers lifetime guarantee on their products should anything go wrong over the course of ownership.