Boswell - the Beeman® Mascot
(click on picture to see enlarged view)
Boswell is the friendly little bearcub that you see in the various Beeman logos, on some pellet tin covers, and most especially, in a place of honor on the cover of the First Edition of the Beeman catalog and our old letterheads. When we first started laying out our first printed materials on our dining room table we did not have funds for commercial art. Robert had an old linotype slug which he had saved from being thrown out many years ago. This linotype slug depicted a cute bearcub on a tree limb and had been used in producing a Wildlife Management Department bulletin at the University of Idaho. We decided to use this bearcub as the Beeman® "mascot".
For those of you who don't know that printing went back before computers: A linotype slug is a metal image cast in reverse, It is mounted on a wooden block which is placed in its appropriate place on a printing press tray arrangement of cast linotype metal letters. Pieces of linotype lead are using to provide the space between lines of printing and other images. After the top surface of all these assembled cast linotype objects is inked, a piece of paper is pressed to the surface and a printed page is produced. We had a printing company print a positive image of the little bear. We then literally pasted this image into its proper place among the pasted-on other images and paper pieces of printed text copy to produce a "camera ready" copy which was then sent to the printers for photo processing into etched metal plates used for mass printing. (So, now you know the origin of the terms "leading" and "paste" on your computer and computer programs.)
Very early in the early stages of the Beeman® company's growth, we had a contest to name our mascot. The winning name was Boswell. Of course, Boswell was the spirit behind the development of many of Beeman's product names: Bearcub®, Silver Bear®, Kodiak®, Bruin®, etc.. When we sold the company, we had to say goodbye to Boswell as he was part of the sales deal. He still looks out at us from many Beeman® logos and other items.
Post-script, 2002: Boswell lives on as "Bos" - one of our new best friends. Click on this and scroll to near the end of that section!