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National Paperclip Day

5/29/2015 | Commercial Litigation Blog, Kaplin Stewart Blog

Yes, even the paperclip has it’s own day of honor. It is about that well-known piece of curved wire that keeps our papers together and helps keep us organized.

According to the Early Office Museum, the first patent for a “bent wire paper clip” was presented to Samuel B. Fay in the United States in 1867. The original intention of Fay’s clip was to attach tickets to fabric, however the patent recognized that it could also be used to attach papers together.

Along with Fay’s patent, there were as many as 50 others that received patents for similar designs prior to 1899. One other notable name receiving a patent for his paperclip design in the United States was Erlman J. Wright in 1877. At that time, his clip was advertised for use in fastening newspapers.

The Gem paper clip, which was most likely in production in Britain in the early 1870′s by “The Gem Manufacturing Company” , was never patented. It is the most common type of wire paper clip and is still in use today. It was introduced to the United States around 1892 and in 1904, Cushman & Denison registered a trademark for the “Gem” name in connection with paper clips. Paperclips are still sometimes called “Gem clips”.