Uranium Containing Pencil (ca. 1960)
|This advertising pencil has a
plastic container at one end that contains a sample of uranium ore.
It was produced for the Eberly Sales Corporation by the Kingston
Pencil Company of Chattanooga
In 1957, the
Kingston Pencil Company received a license from the Atomic Energy
Commission that authorized them to possess up to 24 tons of uranium ore. Nevertheless,
it seems that their one and only purchase was for 2,400 pounds of ore from
the Daybuck Company of
Each pencil contained 1.5 to 2.5 grams of 1.7 % ore
(ca. 0.02 uCi). A
memorandum from the Atomic Energy Commission in 1960 estimated that
if the entire sample were ingested, the incorporated uranium would only
amount to 1/25,000 of the permissible body burden. Nevertheless, that same
year the New York Times reported that the
Memorandum from J.O. Delaney, Nuclear Materials Branch, Atomic Energy Commission. November 1960.
Memo from James Turner, Health Protection Branch, Atomic Energy Commission. September 1959.
Compliance Inspection Report.
Pencils Radioactive. New York Times
Copyright 1999, Oak Ridge Associated Universities