Who Invented The Stapler?

Ever wondered who invented the stapler? Everyone has used staplers at least once in their lives. They can be found everywhere; schools, offices, and even homes. Staplers help ensure that the papers stay together, which makes them one of the most useful tools for people of every age (it is clear that no one wants to endure the long and tedious process of sewing the papers together).

But who came up with the idea of the first stapler? Have staplers evolved over time? Let’s find out!

What is a Stapler?

The stapler drives a thin metal staple through multiple sheets of paper, folding the ends as it goes. Staplers are generally classified as either manual or electric. It’s a handheld tool you use to staple bits of paper together. Sheets can be stapled together more quickly and efficiently using electric staplers.

Who Invented The Stapler?

In the 19th century, as paper became more widely available, people sought better methods to keep it together which created a demand for an efficient paper fastener. George McGill obtained the first patent for a bendable brass paper fastener in 1866 and the first commercially successful stapler in 1879. We should also mention that the French king’s paper fasteners, were made of gold and embellished with precious gems! To drive the fasteners through paper, he first developed a bendable paper fastener in 1866 and then a practical staple press in 1867 (as opposed to opulently decorative staplers).

In 1876, he displayed his invention of the latter at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition. Both C.H. Gould (who obtained a patent in England) and Albert Kletzker (who received a patent in the U.S.) patented versions of the first stapler. The invention of the stapler in 1877 that could drive the staple through paper and hold it was patented by Henry Heyl. At the same time, Henry also filed patents for the Novelty Paper Box Manufacturing Co.

With a Hotchkiss stapler that used a row of staples welded together, the staples were driven into the paper by striking the plunger part with a hammer or mallet.

The Stapling Revolution of 1937 

During the late 1800s and early 1900s, many inventions were undergoing intense competition to improve the product. There were many patents issued for variations of stapling technology. In 1895, the American E.H. Hotchkiss Company developed a stapler with bendable staples. However, this stapler required a little too much energy of the users to make it work, and thus wasn’t that much of a success. It was then that Jack Links designed the Swingline product – the revolutionary product.

Swingle rapidly became a hit, because it was a simpler version of what we just discussed above, People found it easy to insert a row of staples into the machine to use it. In the past, manual staplers were more common, with some descriptions mentioning that screwdrivers and hammers were required to operate older staplers. According to Alan Seff, the son-in-law of Linskey, you basically needed a screwdriver and a hammer to put staples in. But Linskey and his engineers developed a patented machine where you simply opened the top of the machine and popped staples in. How convenient!

Surprisingly enough, no one bothered to improve the design of this invention by Linskey since 1937 because it was so revolutionary. There are certainly many types of modern stapler available today to suit a variety of needs. Wood can be stapled together with a staple gun just as effectively as paper can be stapled together with a Swingline stapler. Staples are used in medicine to bind together large wounds in order to heal. The use of modern stapling technology can help make flooring, roofing, and even drywall installations easier. 

Types of Staplers

who invented the stapler? Who was it invented for?

Staplers come in all shapes and sizes. Listed below are some of the most common types that are used widely today. If you are confused about which type of stapler to get, continue reading below!

Full Strip Staplers

A full strip paper stapler is able to load an entire strip at once. These staplers are usually standard desktop staplers. The stapler can staple 20 to over 50 sheets of paper with an 80gsm weight.

Half Strip Staplers

As opposed to full-length staplers, half-length staplers are half the size. This paper stapler has the capability of stapling anywhere between 15 and 30 sheets of 80gsm paper and it is very light. These staplers store a half-strip of staples and are intended for use on flat surfaces such as a desk.

Vertical Staplers

Another modern stapler is the vertical stapler; a good choice for you if you want something a little different. The stapler is usually held up by a stand, and you can use it as a handle to punch staples while holding the paper up. If you have a busy office environment, a vertical stapler can be ideal for sitting next to the printer.

Long Arm Staplers

With the Long-Reach Stapler, you can bind books, brochures, pamphlets, or mount cards and they can staple up to 20 sheets. Staplers of this type use standard staples and can adjust the throat depth up to 12″ deep.


And that is about it!

We hope that the information above about who invented the stapler proved to be useful to you. If you have any more information regarding old or modern staplers that you think might benefit the readers of this article feel free to let us know and remember to check out our entire database of inventions as well.

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