Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Obituary: Man who invented twist tie dies

Yesterday, at 104 years old, George Hinson passed away from natural causes in his Ft Washington, PA estate. Hinson is most well remembered for his contribution to the bag sealing industry.

In 1923, at the age of 20, Hinson came up with the idea for the twist tie after he twisted his ankle in a game of bouncy bouncy wall ball, a popular Philadelphia-area street game.

In a 1989, interview Hinson noted,"We needed something to keep those darn bread bags closed so the air wouldn't get in and the bread wouldn't get out."

On that warm summer day just after he had twisted his ankle the idea hit him that "a wire coated in a smooth material could be twisted around the opening of a bread bag and then untwisted and then twisted again." Before the twist tie vines and cat tails had been used to keep bags closed.

His great grandson Dale said he spoke to his ailing great grandfather on Saturday and the senior couldn't believe that the twist tie was "still going strong." Dale laughed,"Grandpa said he thought that by now one would be able to keep bags closed with e-mail." Obviously, George Hinson was losing his mind. The twist tie fortune will be left to his surviving relatives with a small portion going to the Bouncy Bouncy Wall Ball Federation.

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