Startacus Join Now! /
View Our Toolkit

Unusual Inventions - The flat bottomed paper bag

Startacus RSS

by Startacus Admin

Perhaps at the time this was an invention not unusual because of its' design, but because this great idea was conceived, designed and tested by a Woman - the indignity! Or so it was at the time to some...flat bottomed bag

The story goes that Margaret E Khight, an inventor from an early age, (we are talking the mid 19th Century by the way) was working in a Paper Bag plant in Massachusetts. Frustrated that items placed in the paper bags never sat flat, she went about inventing a machine that could create a flat bottomed paper bag - the machine would do the work of folding and sticking the bag into place.

So, especially in the States, we have Margaret to thank for the flat bottomed paper bags you get given to pack your items in Supermarkets! However what is unusual about this invention, is that she had to go to court to prove that the invention was hers in the first place.

Charles Annan, a visitor to the factory where Margaret was testing her prototype, stole the concept of her machine and patented the design, initially taking credit for the invention. However Margaret, as costly as it was, took Annan to court. Annan argued that Margaret could not have designed the machine, after all she could not have understood the complexities involved - as she was a woman!

Thankfully, via witnesses, diary entries and complex drawings - Margaret was able to prove her case and the patent was overturned.

Startacus loves this story - and it's a lesson to us all. Don’t be held back by dogma, or expectations - great ideas, inventions and inventors don’t follow rules, they make them!


Startacus RSS
Business DealsSubmit Your Startup
Win TicketsNetwork and Collaborate
Our Latest Features



Published on: 10th August 2012

If you would like to enable commenting via your Startacus account, please enable Disqus functionality in your Account Settings.


Create an Idea!View Other Ideas, Projects or Startups
Drive with Belron Why not Sign Up?
Create Projects
Edit Projects
Self Interviews
Self Starter of the Year
Product Giveaways
Subscribe to our Newsletter
  • Top Startup Events UK and Ireland 2017 20th Jan 2017 In honoured tradition we return with our roundup and list of the top UK and Ireland Startup Events and Conferences for 2017.
  • AIB Start-up Academy Summit returns to Belfast! 13th Jan 2017 Northern Ireland startups and entrepreneurs listen up! The AIB Start-up Academy Summit will be back in Belfast and we’ve all the important info you need to bag your free ticket to attend!
  • Newcastle Startup Week Set to Inspire 11th Jan 2017 Newcastle Startup Week - a new festival of entrepreneurship aims to inspire local people to start businesses and attract greater inward investment to the city and wider North East of England region.
  • Drive with Belron Accelerator seeks disruptive Startups 7th Jan 2017 The world’s leading vehicle glass repair and replacement service provider Belron is back on the hunt for innovative startups to joins its ten week accelerator Drive.
Startacus
Check us out at our Google+ page!