Ragg’s was among the first to start traditional razor making Richard Ragg, a distant relation of John and William Ragg established himself as a cutler in Ecclesfield in 1601.
In 1833, John & William Ragg was listed as a razor, scissors, and pen knife manufacturer in Johnson Street, Sheffield. In 1839, the firm began advertising its striking ‘NAPOLEON’ trade mark (showing Napoleon crossing the Alps painted by Jacques-Louis David). ‘PARAGON’ and ‘PLANTAGANET’ were other marks. While William oversaw the workshops, John was the travelling salesman selling razors to high class gentleman’s outfitters in London and Birmingham.
The business was passed on down through the family until in 1907 it relocated to Nursery Works, 95 Eldon Street and became limited company. In the 1920s, it produced safety razors under the trade name ‘ROTAX’, using its own machinery. Faster German machines were later installed, which were capable of producing about 15,000 blades a day. ‘PARAGON’ was also etched on safety razors. In addition, in 1933 Ragg Tuning Forks Ltd was established and Ragg’s began making blades for handicraft modelling.
In 1977 Ragg took over William Grant Ltd and having moved to new premises at Callywhite Lane, Dronfield ceased production of razors but continued to make professional knives, palette knives, and surgical scalpels as Granton Ragg Ltd. By 2011, it had been renamed Granton Medical Ltd, which reflected its focus on scalpels, sterilised packaging, and tuning forks for medical diagnosis). In 2012, Granton Medical sold Ragg Tuning Forks to Uniplex.
The razors we are selling here are believed to date from the 1960’s and 1970’s and are thought to be recently discovered residual stock.
This vintage John & William Ragg razor has a plain 6/8 carbon blade, with jimping to the upper and lower tang and a plain spine. It bears the words “John & WM Ragg Sheffield Eng” on the reverse of the tang and the word “NAPOLEON” on the front. It has a round point and white plastic scales. We believe the razor dates from the period before Ragg’s was taken over by William Grant’s in the 1970’s. Despite its age, it is in very good condition with only a very small amount of corrosion around the monkey tail, and is in otherwise perfect condition forwards from the pivot pin. This razor differs from IE508 in that it has a slightly different shape blade and a rounder point.
SHAVE READY – all our razors are individually prepared and supplied shave ready. For full details see our policy.