Happy birthday Post-it notes – you’ve stuck with us for 30 years

Happy birthday Post-it notes – you’ve stuck with us for 30 years

Did you know that Post-it notes turn 30 this year? (Possibly even today!) According to the makers 3M, it* was first sold nationally across the USA in 1980. And we’ve been singing the praises of this essential item of stationery ever since.

You wouldn’t believe it, but singing and Post-its are inextricably linked. Back in 1974, a chap called ArtFry was a new product engineer for 3M. Art sang in his church choir, and he used bits of paper to flag the hymns in his hymn book. But they never stayed in place and kept falling out. A case, you could say, of not singing to the same hymn sheet. (You can insert your own trumpet and drum-roll here.)

Then Art discovered that in 1968, another 3M employee, Dr Spencer Silver, had invented a new kind of glue, which was made up of little spheres, rather than a film. It created a low-grade stickiness and did not leave any residue. But try as he might, Dr Silver could not find a use for it in 3M.

Art came upon Dr Silver’s glue languishing in 3M’s vaults, and he finally found a use for it. The Post-it note was born – a marker that he could put into and remove from his hymn book, without damaging the pages.

In 1977 Art was able to make enough Post-its to supply all of 3M’s corporate HQ and staff were hooked on them. Or rather...stuck on them. Ho ho! (I hope you kept that trumpet handy.)

Check out 3M’s Post-it note page.

*I’m not sure what the grammar is, either. Are Post-notes an it or a them? Also, what’s the term for a group? We have a murder of crows, a crash of Rhinoceros and a, peel of Post-its? I know – we’ll call it a ‘handme’, as in ‘Can you hand me a Post-it?’

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