Hilson may not be one of the better-known names around, but the marque's history is one of the longest; it began with a German fellow by the name of Jean Knodgen, who decided he really wanted to make clay pipes in Belgium, for some reason, back in 1846. The operation he founded would later switch to briars, under Jean Hillen, who had married into the Knogden family. It would remain a family business until 1980, when the Hilson name (derived from "Hillsen and son") was bought by the Royal Dutch Pipe Factory and production was moved to the Netherlands. This smooth Rhodesian, nothing fancy but quite a nice, trim shape, dates from the family-owned era.
- Eric N. Squires