A Brief History of the Mason Jar
Used for canning pickles and sipping iced tea, these wide-mouthed jars have been kitchen mainstays ever since the Ball Corporation began producing them in 1884. Even now, the company continues to make 585,000 mason jars each day.
John Mason invents the first canning jar with a screw top, his patent expires in 1879, opening the market to competition.
Brothers Frank, Edmund, George, Lucius, and William form Ball Brothers Glass Manufacturing in New York State and start making mason jars. The company moves to Indiana three years later.
The first Ball Blue Book, a primer on home canning, is published. (An updated version can be purchased at freshpreserving.com)
The Ball brothers bequeath a small college in Muncie to the state of Indiana; the school is later renamed Ball State University.
The Ball Company does not lay off a single employee during the Great Depression.
After 88 years as family-owned business, Ball goes public.
The Ball mason jar celebrates its 125th anniversary. An exhibit, Can It! 125 Years of the Ball Jar, could be viewed at the Minnetrista Cultural Center in Muncie, Indiana.
Graphic from Graphic Fairy
Article from Country Living - May 2009