Amazing shipment from Finnie
It was the school-year of 1985 to 1986 when college-buddies Tom, Pat and Finnie were making long hard days of engineering stuff at Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg. As students tend to do, they drank their occasional beers together to stay on top of life. Where and how the idea emerged to create one long chain of the ring pulls is a question that still needs to be answered, but a fact is that they did! Within that single year, the chain grew to an amazing 12,5 meter, or 41 feet!
..This shipment is particulary interesting for our project..
After the year had ended, Finnie apparently became the curator of this grant piece of art and never threw it out. It remained in her house until, probably by accident, fell in the crevice between of an insulated double wall where it stayed until Finnie renovated her kitchen last year during a Covid-19 pandemic lock-down-kitchen-renovation. If the chain would have survived if is had not been lost, is hard to tell, but clear is that Finnie knew where to send it when it surfaced and it landed on the Internal Centre for Pull Tab Archaeology’s doorstep two days ago, neatly packed and taped between two cartons and rolled upon the metal lid of a glass jar.
Thanks Finnie, for this excellent artwork and story! This shipment is particularly interesting for our project because of its details. Because we know the chain was collected in one school-year, we know that chain only consists of pull tabs that were sold in supermarkets at the time. Interestingly this immediately provides us with important data. As our timeline shows the idea is that traditional ring pull left the scene in the USA at about 1983, but this shipment shows that – unless Finnie is wrong about the year, but she assured me she isn’t! – ring pulls were still were in the shops in 1985 in Pennsylvania. This is getting a lot closer to the data we have from Europe.