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The History of Three-Ring Binders

Three-ring binders got their start in 1854 when Henry T. Sisson of Providence, Rhode Island submitted a patent for two-ring and three-ring binders. However, no binders were actually created at this time. Then in 1886, a German inventor named Friedrich Soennecken created the first binder in Germany, which he called “Papierlocher für Sammelmappen.” However, Soennecken’s invention did not immediately catch on in America. In fact, three-ring binders weren’t sold in the United States until 1899, when The Chicago Binder and File Company began to produce and sell them. These early binders looked more like hardcover books than the binders we know and love today. They featured three pieces of binder board covered with book cloth and had end sheets attached. However, technology advanced, and binders were soon made with two sheets of heat-sealed vinyl along the edges and hinges. While these early vinyl binders were fairly similar to those currently on the market, they were not as strong as modern offerings. Today, three-ring binders remain a staple item in offices and classrooms across the globe.

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