The company manufactured its 500 millionth lighter on June 5, 2012.
A little nostalgia in today’s news: My brother carried a Zippo lighter with him in the South Pacific during WW II; I carried one in the Korean War and a nephew carried one in Vietnam.
Why is that nostalgic? Because even in the toughest of times we always had a lighter.
Yesterday — following some maintenance work — I needed to re-ignite pilot lights on my water heater, oven and range, but we’ve morphed into a smoke free household and couldn’t find a thing for the job. Does that mean we need to re-learn how to start a flame from dried leaves and sticks? Nah, just get a new Zippo and keep it handy.
• [Inventor George G.] Blaisdell made the first Zippo lighter in Bradford, PA in 1932 from brass tubing. They went into production in early 1933. He backed the product with the famous lifetime guarantee. That guarantee is still honored today.
• Zippo lighters were [first] manufactured above an automobile garage.
• Originally, the lighters were made completely by hand and sold for $1.95. [That was a high cost item for the early 1930s.]
• The first ad for Zippo lighters ran in a 1936 edition of Esquire magazine.
• World War II finally put Zippo on the map. All of Zippo’s production was commissioned for the military. The lighters were made out of steel and coated with thick, black crackle paint. Soldiers [sailors, Marines and Air Corpmen] carried them around the world.
• … Ernie Pyle, the famous World War II correspondent … was Zippo’s biggest ally in the war. …
Leave a Reply
"Zippo Makes 500,000,000th Lighter"