The brand Hilson originated in the Belgian Bree. The Hillen family had a wholesale trade in pipes and other smoking supplies. From the wholesale they started a pipe factory that made briar pipes of a good quality in an average price range. In Europe and Germany in particular, these pipes were very popular in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1980 Hilson got into financial problems, as a result of which the factory was sold to the Dutch pipe manufacturer Gubbels, known from Big Ben. Since then Big Ben models have also been used under the name Hilson. Nowadays this does not happen anymore. Under the name Hilson still pipes are made, but only separate releases. For example, a collaboration has taken place with the now deceased Rainer Barbi, a beautiful series in which Gubbels was allowed to use Barbi's models.