Iowa man’s collection of 70,000 pencils being evaluated as possible world record

COLFAX, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa man may be well on his way to an official world record — for pencils.

Aaron Bartholmey of Colfax has been collecting wooden advertising pencils since he was a child. Now, he claims to own more than 70,000. That’s substantially more than the Guinness World Record for the largest pencil collection — 24,000, held by Emilio Arenas from Uruguay since 2020.

Bartholmey said that his most treasured pencils are those from his hometown, noting that in many instances the pencils “are the only place where there is any record of that business still, and I think it’s just a neat way to preserve history.”

Last weekend, two counters from the American Pencil Collectors Society were at the Colfax Historical Society to count Bartholmey’s pencils. Now, he’s waiting to hear if the count is approved by Guinness, which estimated the review process could take up to three months.