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Some people would be surprised to know that even the smallest detail in their school supplies have been invented by a number of people before one of them hit the jackpot with their tinkering. This was the case with early versions of the projector, the photocopier, and even the paperclip.

This was also the case with the ring binder, which will be tackling today.

A German Invention

The ring binder was believed to be invented by German entrepreneur and inventor Friedrich Soennecken in 1886. The Bonn native also patented another invention, the hole punch, the same year. Soennecken was a known office supplier in his town. The image of the ring binder was later incorporated to his logo, symbolizing his love for office supplies and innovation.

The ring binder was also modified by another German entrepreneur, Louis Leitz, whose office supplies company, Leitz, introduced the lever arch file. Leitz's file is characterized by a hole in the side. Binders during Soennecken and Leitz's time bore two holes that are 80 millimetres apart, based on ISO standards (ISO 838).

Binders in the US

Perhaps the most popular event in office supplies history that led to the invention of the two-ring and three-ring binder in the United States was the invention of the loose-leaf paper in 1854. Soon, people realized that it's better to use notebooks than loose-leaf paper, and to answer the gap, Henry T. Sisson of Rhode Island created the two-ring and three-ring binder.

Sisson spent a few good years developing his binder. It wasn't until 1899, however, that the binder, specifically, a three-ring binder, was mass-produced for public consumption. The first known company to sell this kind of binder was the Chicago Binder and File Company. Come fifty years later, D-ring binders were introduced to the market.

Made in Sweden

The four-ring binder, on the other hand, was invented in 1890 by a man named Andreas Tengwall in Sweden. Called the "Trio binder," the binder was named after Tengwall's business partnership with two more entrepreneurs. The holes in the binder are 21 mm, 70 mm and 21 mm apart.

Explore our filing and storage products today:


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