Patented by Friedrich Soennecken

The hole punch: Google honours the Bonn invention

Das Google-Doodle zum Locher.

The Google-Doodle of the hole punch.

Bonn. The hole punch is 131 years old today this Tuesday and Google has honoured the office helper with a Doodle on its birthday. The hole punch was invented by a Bonn entrepreneur.

“Klein oder groß – lochen famos!” (Small or large –excellent hole punching!) This was the slogan used to advertise the hole punch many decades ago. Today, the “excellent” helper is an essential part of any office or desk and it is dancing for a day on the Google homepage. The reason: on 14 November 1886, exactly 131 years ago, the patent was registered for this office helper.

The hole punch originated in Bonn and was invented by Friedrich Soennecken. On 14 November 1886, the salesman and entrepreneur was granted patent 40065 by the Imperial Patent Office for the “paper hole punch for folders, letter files and suchlike” he invented. Soennecken founded his company in 1875 in Remschied and one year later it moved to Bonn.

The native of the Sauerland had already celebrated his first success with the invention of a new kind of  pen nib. Soennecken developed the metal circular pen nib, with which text could be written in the same width.

Soennecken is also the inventor of the file, which he launched onto the market in 1886 as a “letter file.” He also developed the loose-leaf calendar and also brought the ring binder onto the market in 1903. Today, the office supplies producer is remembered by the Friedrich-Soennecken-Straße in Poppelsdorf as well as the family mausoleum at the Poppelsdorf cemetery.

Soennecken’s hole punch made it from Bonn all over the world and, thanks to Doodle, it has also conquered the virtual world this Tuesday.

Original text: Alexander Hertel. Translated by Kate Carey.