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Random Facts

This month's random fact covers that corrugated miracle, the fabulous friends of movers every where, cardboard. The technically correct name for what everyone calls cardboard is actually corrugated fiberboard. It has a layer of corrugated, or pleated, ultra heavy paper attached to one, or more commonly sandwiched between two, pieces of flat liner boards. The history of this paper based, all purpose wonder-kid is actually pretty simple. In the mid-19th century, an ingenious concept enabled flimsy sheets of paper to be transformed into a rigid, stack-able and cushioning form of packaging for delicate goods in transit. Corrugated paper was patented in England in 1856, and used as a liner for tall hats, but corrugated boxboard was not patented and used as a shipping material until December 20, 1871. The patent was issued to Albert Jones of New York City for single-sided corrugated board. Jones used the corrugated board for wrapping bottles and glass lantern chimneys. The first machine for producing large quantities of corrugated board was built in 1874 by G. Smyth, and in the same year Oliver Long improved upon Jones' design by inventing corrugated board with liner sheets on both sides. This was corrugated board as we know it today. The actual box we all know and love was invented by Robert Gair in 1890, flat pieces manufactured in bulk that folded into boxes. Gair's invention came about as a result of an accident: he was a Brooklyn printer and paper-bag maker during the 1870s, and one day, while he was printing an order of seed bags, a metal ruler normally used to crease bags shifted in position and cut them. Gair discovered that by cutting and creasing in one operation he could make prefabricated paperboard boxes. Applying this idea to corrugated boxboard was a straightforward development when the material became available in the early twentieth century. This material is also fantastically recyclable resource because it is so easily broken down and re-used, in fact many of the boxes used today are recycled from other paper products. So the next time you open a cardboard box, or put something in one, give your self a second to wonder where in the world it might have traveled over it's combined, recycled life. Just remember to recycle your boxes when you are done and keep the cycle going!

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/203_5-2011  

Jennifer Adam pruamerican.com Office: 480-767-6900 Please enjoy this issue of the magazine! Have an exceptionally mobile May, and as always,...

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