Cellophane tape was invented early in 1930 by Richard Gurley Drew after he had already invented masking tape to be used in auto body shops. He worked for 3M based in St. Paul, Minnesota and was trying to solve a problem for packaging companies. Another company, DuPont, had created a clear crinkly packaging that we think of inside cracker boxes or breakfast cereal. That product was called cellophane. Drew was searching for a product to seal these bags and used his masking tape idea to apply to strips of cellophane to seal cellophane bags. Just about the time he perfected his cellophane tape invention to seal cellophane, DuPont figured out a way to seal cellophane bags with heat. So Drew’s new invention wasn’t needed.
Oh, really? Today it is estimated that 90% of homes have at least one roll of cellophane tape. We now call this tape by several names but Scotch tape is the most popular name. (The background of how it got the name “Scotch” would be an interesting research project for you.)
Scotch tape is used for all kinds of things: wrap a present, fix a book, repair curtains, hem a skirt, fix a hole in a bucket, and wrap cords together just to name a few! It was a very valuable tool during the Great Depression when people needed to repair an item rather than buy new.
This funny product was thought to be replaced by a heat sealing packaging machine, but has turned into one of the most useful inventions of all times. A patent was issued on May 27, 1930 and the inventor was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame in 2007.
This reminds me of the story of Joseph who told his brothers, “You meant this for evil, but God turned it for good.” We might not always understand what God has in mind for us. We just have to live each day saying “yes” to Jesus and in the end He will use us in His kingdom. We might even end up doing a job that no one else can do. Scotch tape was invented to seal packages, but it turned out to do something even more important -- lots of little jobs in every household. What little job does God have for you??