On February 20, 1872, Luther Crowell patented a machine that manufactured the square-bottom paper grocery bags.
The square-bottom paper grocery bag has been around well over a century. The invention was widely used across the world. Historian, Daniel J. Boorstin, found that the square-bottomed paper bag was the most effective innovation in speeding up American retail sales that within only a few years of its introduction became a pervasive feature of American life.
While working on this invention, Crowell devised ways to safely handle paper through machine. This technology soon found wider application domain. For examaple, it could help meet the paper folding needs of a newspaper printing press. Accordingly, the printing press manufacturer, R. Hoe & Co., offered Crowell both a substantial sum of money for the rights to use his patented methods and a liberal salary to devote his talents to their needs in designing printing equipment.
Luther Crowell was a prolific inventor, holding over 280 patents in his lifetime, including some on flying machines.
Publication number: US123812 A
Patent Title: Improvement in paper-bag machines
Publication type: Grant
Publication date: Feb 20, 1872
Inventors: C. Ceo Well
Original Assignee: F One