Pipe Personalities


Fred MacMurray

While watching an episode of the DIY Network's series Building off the Grid I learned about a somewhat lesser know pipe smoker by the name of Authur Strout who had a pretty interesting job back in his day.  This episode of Building off the Grid was of the restoration of the Halfway Rock Lighthouse in Casco Bay, Maine.  The lighthouse had been sold at auction in May of 2014 for $283,000 to Ford Reiche who took on the monumental task of restoring the lighthouse which is only accessible by boat and subject to some very turbulent seas.  Arthur S. Strout was mentioned as one of the lighthouse keepers during the years of 1929 to 1946 and was pictured smoking a pipe while playing a hand of solitaire and I'm sure that pipe helped him while away many a lonely hour on that small rocky island. Believe it or not Strout came from a family of lighthouse keepers.  The Strout family of four generations served a total of 128 years as lighthouse tenders, with over 100 years of combined service between family members.  Most of the time was served tending the Portland Head Light but Len Strout was the keeper of the Portland Breakwater Light and our featured pipe smoker Arthur Strout, was keeper of Halfway Rock Light.

Rudyard Kipling

While visiting Gloucester, MA James Pringle, of the Boston Globe, who met RK on one of his visits to the fishing port of Gloucester, Mass., found him friendly and unpretentious. He wrote:

...he affected no fine raiment or sought notice by distinctive attire. While here he wore a suit of brownish tweed which might have been picked out from a lot on a ready-made counter at the prevailing price for a suit of that quality in those days, $15... Inseparable was the pipe of French briar.."

Although Kipling was well know for smoking a pipe, he was often photographed with a cigar and is the author of well know quote: "A woman is only a woman, but a good cigar is a smoke."

(The following is borrowed from BBC.co.uk Historic Figures )

Kipling was an English writer and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature. He is best known for his poems and stories set in India during the period of British imperial rule.

Arthur Strout

While watching an episode of the DIY Network's series Building off the Grid I learned about a somewhat lesser know pipe smoker by the name of Authur Strout who had a pretty interesting job back in his day.  This episode of Building off the Grid was of the restoration of the Halfway Rock Lighthouse in Casco Bay, Maine.  The lighthouse had been sold at auction in May of 2014 for $283,000 to Ford Reiche who took on the monumental task of restoring the lighthouse which is only accessible by boat and subject to some very turbulent seas.  Arthur S. Strout was mentioned as one of the lighthouse keepers during the years of 1929 to 1946 and was pictured smoking a pipe while playing a hand of solitaire and I'm sure that pipe helped him while away many a lonely hour on that small rocky island. Believe it or not Strout came from a family of lighthouse keepers.  The Strout family of four generations served a total of 128 years as lighthouse tenders, with over 100 years of combined service between family members.  Most of the time was served tending the Portland Head Light but Len Strout was the keeper of the Portland Breakwater Light and our featured pipe smoker Arthur Strout, was keeper of Halfway Rock Light.

Thomas Hart Benton

Thomas Hart Benton (April 15, 1889 – January 19, 1975) was an American painter and muralist. Along with Grant Wood and John Steuart Curry, he was at the forefront of the Regionalist art movement. His fluid, sculpted figures in his paintings showed everyday people in scenes of life in the United States. His work is strongly associated with the Midwestern United States, where he was born and called home for most of his life. He also studied in Paris, lived in New York City for more than 20 years and painted scores of works there, summered for 50 years on Martha's Vineyard off the New England coast, and also painted scenes of the American South and West.

Benton was born in Neosho, Missouri, into an influential family of politicians.His mother was Elizabeth Wise Benton and his father, Colonel Maecenas Benton, was a lawyer and four times elected as U.S. congressman. Known as the "little giant of the Ozarks", Maecenas named his son after his own great-uncle,Thomas Hart Benton, one of the first two United States Senators elected from Missouri.

Sparky Anderson

With the first signs of spring in the air and baseball season right around the corner it seemed appropriate to highlight baseball legend Sparky Anderson as our pipe personality for this edition of the Gazette. Many ball players are well know for chewing gum, eating sunflower seeds while spitting out the shells or doing their chipmunk impression with cheeks filled with chewing tobacco. But Sparky was was among the very few that was better known for satisfying his oral fixation by smoking his pipe. He never seemed more at ease than the hours before a game, when he would sit in his office, smoke his pipe and offer opinions on dozens of subjects.
George Lee "Sparky" Anderson was an American Major League Baseball player, coach, and manager. He managed the National League's Cincinnati Reds to the 1975 and 1976 championships, then added a third title in 1984 with the Detroit Tigers of the American League. He was the first manager to win the World Series in both leagues. His 2,194 career wins are the sixth most for a manager in Major Leagues.

Sean Lemass

Sean Lemass, often called the father of modern Ireland, was often pictured with pipe clenched firmly in his prominent teeth. Mr. Lemass was a week-end golfer and horse racing enthusiast who liked a game of cards but loved to smoke his pipe. He had been a heavy pipe smoker all his life, smoking almost a pound of tobacco a week in later life.
Born in Dublin in 1899 Lemass was a veteran of the Easter Rising in 1916. He fought in the War of Independence and was imprisoned in Ballykinlar in County Down for a year. He opposed the Anglo-Irish Treaty and fought against the Michael Collins Free State in the subsequent Civil War. He was among the rebels who occupied the Four Courts which were famously bombed by the Free State forces. He was again interned in Mountjoy and the Curragh.

Following the Easter Rising, Lemass remained active in the Irish Volunteers, carrying out raids for arms.

Thomas Chandler Haliburton

“The fact is, squire, the moment a man takes to a pipe, he becomes a philosopher. It's the poor man's friend; it calms the mind, soothes the temper, and makes a man patient under difficulties. It has made more good men, good husbands, kind masters, indulgent fathers, than any other blessed thing on this universal earth.”

I could not find any solid evidence, photo or writen, that Thomas Chandler Haliburton smoked a pipe and on the contrary, some writings may lead the reader to believe that smoking, among other vices, was not good. But anyone responsible for the quote shown above must have smoked a pipe and deserves recognition in these pages.

Thomas Chandler Haliburton was born on December 17, 1796, in Windsor, Nova Scotia. Haliburton attained distinction as a local businessman and as a judge, but his greatest fame came from his published writings. He wrote a number of books on history, politics, and farm improvement. He first rose to international fame with his Clockmaker serial, which first appeared in the Novascotian and later published as a book throughout the British Empire, becoming popular light reading. The work recounted the humorous adventures of the character Sam Slick.

Bertrand Russell

It is not common in the 21st Century to surf the web for the latest happenings and run across an article that contains a prominent picture of a man smoking his pipe. This just recently happened and it was an obvious sign of who should be SHPC's next pipe personality of the month. Among Bertrand Russell's many passions for philosopy, mathmatics and history, he was also very fond of tobacco and states that he smokes all day unless eating or sleeping. He even claims smoking had saved his life (see video below). After hearing this there was no question he would become a permanent resident of the SHPC Gazette.

(excerpted from Wikipedia)
Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell (May 1872 – February 1970) was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, writer, social critic, political activist, and Nobel laureate. At various points in his life, Russell considered himself a liberal, a socialist and a pacifist, but he also admitted that he had "never been any of these things, in any profound sense." Russell was born in Monmouthshire into one of the most prominent aristocratic families in the United Kingdom.

In case you miss any information or just want to give us feedback, please feel free to contact us.

Pipe and Tobacco Podcasts

Country Squire Radio
countrysquirelogoA weekly podcast about all things pipes and tobacco.  Beau and Jon David have a great chemistry and keep you entertained every week. Check their website for show times. They mix it up a lot YouTube  |  Website
(1:00 PM Eastern Time)

PipesMagazine Radio Show
PMag radio show logoA different interview every week with Brian Levine a well known member of the tobacco industry.  Sit back, relax with your pipe, and enjoy The Pipes Magazine Radio Show!       iTunes  |  Website
(Live Tuesday evenings 8 PM )

Sherlock Holmes Podcasts

I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere (IHOSE)
IHOSElogoA delightful way to spend an evening with Holmes as your affable co hosts Scott Monty and Burt Wolder share their unique perspectives and sense of humor. Find out more than you ever thought possible about the greatest pipe smoker that never lived.

Shows come out twice a month. iTunes  |  Website

Sherlock Holmes: Trifles
Trifles Cover smFrom the producers of the I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere podcast, Trifles is a 15-minute, weekly audio program where Scott & Burt discuss something related to the Canon.
Have you ever stopped to wonder about why Dr. Watson was called James by his wife? Or of Sherlock Holmes's dining habits? Or what happened when he let a criminal escape? Answers to these questions and more await in Trifles, a weekly podcast about details in the Sherlock Holmes stories. iTunes  |  Website

Pipe & Tobacco Episodes:    Episode 71 | Episode 83

Trifles artwork created by Tom Richmond


Keeping the smoking lamp lit since 1989