For The Record: Stencils

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Originally tattooists were required to have enough artistic ability to draw the desired design onto the skin before tattooing. With the advent of wooden, paper and or plastic stencils, the tattoo business opened up to a larger group of craftsmen; who with the aid of the stencil could get

For The Record: Tattoo Stamps

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive:You may have been reading lately about the money problems that the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is having. The Post Office has been trying to find ways to cut expenses as well as bring in more money. One of the least popular expense-cutting ideas was to cut

For The Record: Coney Island

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: It was nice to read recently that Coney Island, USA located at 1208 Surf Avenue has been declared a New York City landmark. It was January of 2011 that the Coney Island’s Landmark Preservation Commission made its decision to protect this early 20th century building, now decorated

For The Record: Percy Waters Deluxe Machine

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Percy Waters was one of the great tattooists/suppliers in the history of our business. Over the years he produced machines with many different frame designs and in his catalog he offered a full line of supplies. Waters was an old-school supplier and the machines that he offered were set-up

For the Record: Gib (Tatts) Thomas

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Gib Thomas, as the story is told, was born in New Orleans around the turn of the 20th century. Early on it was obvious that he had drawing talent, and at the tender age of 14 he left home to make his own way. Somewhere along

For the Record: The Rose Tattoo by Tennessee Williams

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Thomas Lanier Williams was born March 26 1911 in Columbus Mississippi to the son of a shoe salesman. He studied at the University of Missouri, Washington University in St. Louis and graduated from the University of Iowa in 1938. In 1939 he moved to New Orleans.

For the Record: Jack Redcloud

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: I recently came across an ad in The New York Times for prints from Edwards S. Curtis’ Native American photographs. Curtis is well-known for his images of the fading American Indian’s way of life. One of the images offered in this advertisement was for the Oglala Sioux

For the Record: The Zeis Studio Flash

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: The Zeis Studio, Milton Zeis’ supply business was set up to provide a full line of supplies for the tattooist. Many of Zeis’ ideas were taken from suppliers that preceded him in the business, especially Percy Waters. In addition, the Zeis Studio offered a home study course

For the Record: Sailor Jack Cripe (1918-1992)

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Sailor Jack Cripe was born in 1918 but very little of his early history is known. Once in show business he worked as a tattooist, tattoo attraction and banner painter and dabbled with sword swallowing and knife throwing. Cripe left the show business world for 13 years and sailed as

For the Record: Pigment and Mixing Colors

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Pigment In the beginning, all tattoos were done in black. Once the caveman had fire, they had soot, that when mixed with water turned into a pigment that could be pushed into the skin. Henry Ford’s comment about his Model-T comes to mind, “You could get it in

For the Record: The Coney Island of the West

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: The Pike, often known as the “Coney Island of the West”, was a large amusement park located on the waterfront in Long Beach, California. It all started with a pier that was built in 1893 that grew into a major amusement area. It is unknown when or where the

For the Record: Doc Webb (UDT)

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Before Doc Webb came into the tattoo world he worked as a commercial artist for the Fox West Coast Theaters. He also worked in Seattle, Washington at local arcades making signs. While working at these arcades Doc Webb met tattooist Bob Kelton. As fate would have it

For the Record: History of Tattooing in Chicago

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive:  Today, we can say that Chicago is one of the great cities of the world, but Chicago was a late bloomer. It was still a wilderness roamed by Indians at a time when many other large cities were great centers of trade and industry. Less than one hundred

For the Record: Pelikan Ink

Courtesy of Tattoo Archive: Has anyone else noticed that the large bottles (33.82 oz) of black Pelikan Ink have disappeared from store shelves and tattoo supply catalogs? For several years the famous German ink makers have put labels on their large bottles of Noir Black ink warning, in nine languages, that