It seems like there's a day to celebrate everything. There's national pie day, national write a letter day and national weather complaint day... but today we celebrate the can opener!

I started to wonder how the can opener came to be so I did a little research.

According to an article in Smithsonian Magazine, if you look back even farther, the can opener wouldn't have existed without the can. Believe it or not we have Napoleon Bonaparte to thank for that.

In 1795 he was looking for a way to preserve food for his army who spent a lot of time away from home, so he offered a reward for a working idea. Flashforward a few years to a scientist who claimed the prize, although his idea was a lidded glass jar.

A short time later another inventor suggested the idea of a can made of metal, but sadly prototypes had used such thick metal the cans were near-impossible to open without a hammer and chisel.

Luckily, through the years the metal started getting thinner and the first American patented can opener came to be in 1858. The opener would leave dangerous jagged edges on the cans, so it was primarily used by grocery store owners, who would open items for customers after their purchase.

While other tweaks were made over the next few decades, the can opener we know and love today was invented by Charles Arthur Bunker in the 1920s in Connecticut.

If you do ever find yourself in a pinch, there is a hack for opening cans without the opener... but be careful you don't cut yourself!

And now you know.

~Chris Farber

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