The Bump Paper Fastener was invented by George P Bump and patented (US1065904) in 1913. George Bump went on to create the Bump’s Perfected Paper Fastener Company and at some point changed the name to The Bump Paper Fastener Company in La Crosse Wisconsin. The first design was a table top paper fastener that looked similar to a stapler, however it didn’t use staples or any other material. The Bump Paper Fastener simply cuts a hole in the paper similar to a hole punch, but instead of a round hole, it is triangular in shape. The punched paper is then folded and inserted into an additional slice that was also cut. It was the ultimate in green technology.
After the table top version, George went about inventing a hand held version of the Bump Paper Fastener and on July 21, 1914 (US1104622) it was patented. As far as we have been able to tell there were 4 different versions of the Bump Paper Fasteners. There appears to have been 2 tabletop versions and 2 handheld versions.
Now for the really interesting stuff. On January 16, 1942 the War Production Board (WPB) was established
by executive order. The WPB’s primary task was converting civilian industry to war (World War II) production. Its other task was to limit and create restrictions on the usage of rubber, tin, and steel. Manufactures who produced products using these materials would have to either eliminated production or use alternative materials. For example most companies that made Metal toys were banned from making during this time, since the metal was needed for the war effort. At the same time, staplers and such were still needed, so the Bump Paper Fastener Company was still able to operate and produce their products, but had to change their metal formula to adhere to the WPB’s requirements. This new formula created a semi-gloss black look to the staplers. As such, the bump staplers made during this time have the same blackish color. This is a good indication to know when the fastener was made. Bump Paper fasteners made prior to 1942 were made using different materials and were silver.
The last Bump Paper Fastener was a hand held version invented by Leroy A Thomas. This new version look
s very similar to the one made back in 1914, but instead of the handles pointing inward, they point outward. Other than that the two handhelds look almost identical.
Bump Paper Fastener Patents
Bump Paper Fastener (Tabletop model 1)
Jul 16, 1910
Patent Date – June 24, 1913
Inventor George P Bump
Means for fastening paper sheets
Bump Paper Fastener (Handheld model 1)
May 5, 1913
Patent Date – Jul 21, 1914
Inventor George P Bump La Crosse Wis
Machine For Fastening Paper
Assignor Bump’s Perfected Paper Fastener Company
Bump Paper Fastener (Tabletop model 2)
Nov 28, 1917
Patent Date – Oct 29, 1918
Inventor George P Bump
Implement For Uniting Paper Sheets
Bump Paper Fastener (Handheld model 2)
Oct 16, 1936
Patent Date – Apr 11, 1939
Inventor Leroy A Thomas La Crosse Wis
Assignor to Bump Paper Fastener Company, La Crosse, Wisconsin
The main competitor to the Bump Paper Fastener company appears to be The Clipless Paper Fastener Company of Newton, Iowa. The Clipless Stand Machine made by the Clipless Paper Fastener Company stands out as king of the stapleless stapler.
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