In 1761, cabinet maker Kaspar Faber started a simple pencil manufacturing workshop outside of Nuremberg. Two hundred forty-seven years and eight generations later, the company we know today as Faber-Castell produces over two billion pencils a year!
Lothar Faber, Kaspar's great grandson, personally traveled Europe throughout the 1830's, promoting the pencil imprinted with his family name. Under Lothar's guidance, advances in technology and manufacturing brought the classic hexagonal pencil shape, as well as varying grades of graphite hardness and artists' colored pencils to the Faber range. Lothar introduced Faber pencils to the United States in 1849 when his youngest brother Eberhard set up the company's first foreign subsidiary (Eberhard later started his own pencil company, Eberhard Faber Inc. on the side). The fantastic success of Faber pencils, along with their impeccable business and philanthropic advances, resulted in Lothar's being appointed Imperial Counselor to the Bavarian Crown by King Maximilian II.
Ottilie, Lothar's grand daughter inherited the company after his death in 1896. In 1898 Ottilie married Count Alexander zu Castell-Rudenhausen, a descendent of one of Bavaria's oldest noble families, and the Faber-Castell name was born. It was under Count Alexander's leadership that the green Castell 9000 pencil was introduced in 1905. During this same time, a castle overlooking the company's production facilities was erected to house the headquarters of Faber-Castell.
Today, Count Alexander's grandson, Count Anton Wolfgang von Faber-Castell, employs 6,500 people worldwide. His pioneering efforts in sustainability (Faber-Castell has its own 25,000 acre plantation in Brazil where 215 square feet of wood is grown every hour) have guaranteed the consistent quality of Faber-Castell pencils long into the future.