History of the can

The idea behind cans has been around since the late 18th century!

1795 Napoleon offers 12,000 Franks to anyone who can devise a way of preserving food for his army & navy.
1809 Nicolas Appert (France) devises an idea of packing food into special “bottles”, like wine.
1810 Nicolas Appert (France) receives the 12,000 Frank prize from the French government after he invents the method of preserving food through sterilization. Nicolas publishes “Book for all households” which is translated and published in NY.Peter Durand (England) receives a patent from King George III. The patent includes pottery, glass and tinplated iron for use as food container.
1812 Thomas Kensett (England) starts a small plant in NY: canning oysters, meats, fruits and vegtables in hermetically sealed containers.
1813 John Hall and Bryan Dorkin opened the first commercial canning factory in England
1818 Peter Durand introduces his tinplated iron can in America.
1819 Thomas Kensett and Ezra Gagett start selling their products in canned tinplate cans.
1825 Kensett receives an American patent for tinplated cans.
1830 Huntly and Palmer (England) start selling biscuits and cakes in decorated cans.
1846 Henry Evans uses dies to increase production speeds tenfold.
1847 Allan Taylor, patents a machine for stamping cylindrical can ends.
1849 Henry Evans is granted the patent for the pendulum press, which – when combined with a die device, makes a can end in a single operation. Production now improves from 5 or 6 cans per hour, to 50-60 per hour.
1856 Henry Bessmer (England) discovers first (later on William Kelley, America, separately also discovers) the process of converting cast iron into steel.Gail Borden is granted a patent on canned condensed milk.
1858 Ezra J. Warner (Waterbury, Connecticut) patents the first can opener! This was used heavily by the US military during the civil war!
1866 E.M. Lang (Maine) is granted a patent for sealing tin cans by casting or dropping bar solder in measured drops on can ends.J. Osterhoudt patented the tin can with a key opener.
1870 William Lyman patents a better can opener (rotating wheel, which cuts along the top rim of the can).Hinged lid tin cans are introduced.
1875 Arthur A. Libby and William J. Wilson (Chicago) develop the tapered can for canning corned beef.Sardines first packed in cans.
1876 Hume “floater” introduced to float solder onto ends of can s as they roll along “the line”.
1877 The simplified “side seamer” for cans appears.
1880-1890 Automatic can making machinery debuts.
1892 Tabacco cans introduced.
1894 Ams machine company begins manufacturing locked double seam cans.
1898 George W. Cobb preserving company finally perfects the sanitary can. Sanitary ends take two more years before they are adopted for food canning in Europe.
1899 Inventors Helbling and Pertsch patented aerosols pressurized using methyl and ethyl chloride as propellants.
1901 American can company formed.
1909 Tuna canning begins in California.
1914 Continuous ovens, used to dry inked tinplate, are introduced.
1917 Ernest Moeller (Bayer company) introduces aspirin pocket sized cans.Key-openning collar-can for coffee introduced.
1921 Zinc oxide and other zinc compounds in enamel lining found to prevent discoloration of canned corn by Zinc sulphide (“Corn black”).Canned citrus juice cans first ship from Florida.
1922 Eric Rotheim (Norway) develops the modern aerosol can.
Canned dog food introduced by PH Chopped.
Crimped lids are introduced in Europe.
1926 Canned ham (“SPAM”) was introduced.
1927 Erik Rotheim (Norway), designs the aerosol can in 1926. He patents the first aerosol can and valve that could hold and dispense products and propellant systems (patent received in 1929).
1931 Electrical can opener introduced (with a serrated edge which cuts along the top rim of the can).
1933 Quart can of motor oil introduced.
1935 Introduction of the beer can. The first beer can was “Krueger Cream Ale” – sold by the Kruger Brewing Company of Richmond, Virginia.
Felifoel breweries in Wales introduce canned beer into the UK using cone shaped topped steel cans.
1940 Carbonated soft drink canning begins.
1941 US Soldiers rely on canned field rations during WWII.
1943 Lyle Goodhue and William Sullivan invent a portable aerosol can using pressurized gas that can be used by US service men to kill malaria causing bugs during WWII.
1945 First aerosol cans begin marketing on a wide basis.
1949 Spray paint was invented by Edward Seymour. The first color was aluminum…
1953 Robert Abplanal invents a crimped valve that can dispense pressurized gas. This significantly improves the aerosol can design.
1955 Cans participated in A-Bomb civil defense tests in Nevada in order to test whether canned foods were safe to eat after Nuclear explosions (they were found safe).
1957 Aluminum was introduced in metal can making.
1959 First all-aluminum beer can.Ermal Fraze (Kettring, Ohio) invents the easy open can!
1960 Easy-open can introduced.
1962 Beverage can pull-tab was introduced.
1963 Ernie Fraze (of Dayton, Ohio) together with the Dayton Reliable Tool Company, and Alcoa, invents the aluminium easy-open end.
1964 Two piece can developed. Found to use less metal than the traditional three-piece can.
1965 Aluminum beverage cans introduced.
Tin-Free-steel (TFS chromium) cans developed.
1967 DWI aluminum cans (Drawn and Wall Ironed) are developed in the US.
1968 The first Tin Free Steel (TFS) cans are made in the UK, pushed forward by UK Steel.
1970 First Earth day – recycling begins to raise awareness.
DWI cans take a whole new spin when tinplated two-piece cans are introduced in the UK.
1972 multi-packs for beverage cans are introduced (6-packs).
1973 Indel (of Israel) introduces one of the first tin-plate Coulometric rating systems (SUMETAL)
1980 3M introduces a peel scotch tab for beverage cans.
1985 Aluminum cans dominate beverage market.
Astronauts in outer space receive carbonated beverages in cans.
1987 Introduction of the 206 diameter cans for beverage soft drink cans (beer comes a year later).
1989 Retained ring pull ends for the beverage industry are introduced.
1991 Can ends are downsized 202 and 204 ends reduce the amount of metal required for the ends.
1993 Israeli company Indel introduces the first fully automatic double seam inspection system.
1997 The first fully automatic double seam inspection system for Windows (TM)!
Shaped cans are introduced.
Big mouth cans are introduced using an aperture that’s 45% larger than typical cans.
1998 Big mouth, large opening ends, are introduced in Europe.
Embossed cans start gaining popularity in Europe.
2001 Crown Cork & Seal introduce “202 SuperEnd”. This results in a saving of steel (up to 10% savings), as well as increased strength and better pourability.
2002 The first tinplate thickness rating system under WindowsTM !
2003 Patent awarded to Crown Cork & Seal for the SuperEndTM.
2004 A new method for setting up a seamer is introduced: the clearance gauge
2010 A new non-destructive method for inspection seams is introduced
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