Tag Archives: Germany

A Paper Clip…

is one of those inventions that I never really considered who invented it. (or cared, really)

I considered this for the first time while watching the documentary Paper Clips (naturally) which is not about the invention of the paper clip, but is about students in a rural town in Tennessee learning about the Holocaust. It is worth watching and you can learn more about here.

In that documentary, they mentioned the paper clip was invented in Norway.

However, if you google that information, you will find varying reports on the who, where & when it was actually invented.

Some accounts claim that the first patent was given to John Vaaler, a Norwegian inventor, in Germany in 1899. (As there were no patent laws in Norway at this time) In 1901, John Vaaler received an American Patent.

However, the Early Office Museum begs to differ…

Sigh, will we ever know the truth?



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What do Candy Canes and Legos Have in Common? (04/02)

Not much except while making a post about Legos last week, I discovered “Brick Artist” Nathan Sawaya’s sculptures and was so impressed that I have gone back to his site since and just happened to learn something new about candy canes.

In his words:

So candy canes were invented in 1670 by a choirmaster who gave the sugar-sticks to children in his choir in order to keep them quiet during the long breaks during the Christmas pageant. Good call, because nothing keeps children quiet like giving them sugar.

the sculptures.

I read more and found out that the sticks were bent to represent a shepherd’s staff and were originally all white. The tradition spread through Europe and candy canes made there first appearance in the United States around 1847. Fifty years later, stripes appeared on the canes although no one seems to know by who or why this was done.

read more.


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