Fun With Paper Clips

I am amused and often entertained by those “how stuff is made” shows where they take you through the entire process of manufacturing various items. Tonight I was thinking about how stuff is made and I got to wondering about how paper clips are made. Why paper clips? Because Jim Rockford just said “paper clips” on the tv while I was busy pondering.

So, I started on a quest to find out how paperclips are made. Little did I know that there was so much you could do with paperclips! I ended up watching tons of videos about paper clips. (Yes, I’m easily amused. Did you not notice the title of this blog?) I never got around to finding out how they’re made, but watch all the cool stuff you can do with paper clips below…

Paper clips can make a simple iPhone stand…

How to make a tension wrench. (We’re not advocating lock picking here! LOL.)

Stop motion animation…

Some cool paper clip spinning tops…

…and many other cool things you can do with paper clips.

I said I never got around to seeing how paper clips were made, but I did find out a little about their history and how one small town used them to teach a powerful lesson. The teachers of Tennessee’s Whitwell Middle School wanted to teach their students about what happens when prejudice goes unchecked and chose World War II as an example. The students had a hard time comprehending just how many people Hitler murdered, six million Jews. During the war, Norwegians wore paper clips as a show of solidarity and unity against the Nazis occupying their country. So the teachers took that symbol of solidarity and unity against Hitler and his armies and set out to collect 6 million of them, one for every life lost. They wrote to people, including celebrities, requesting they send paper clips. What they got back was over 25,000 pieces of mail and 11 million paper clips, many with personal stories or dedications attached. And the paper clips are still coming in, 30 million of them at last count. All of the paper clips and the artifacts sent with them are now housed in a monument made from a German rail car that sits on the school grounds. Please view the trailer below for the documentary that was made about the project. Caution, your screen might get blurry. I’m planning on renting the movie if I can find it. I know this post didn’t end on an amusing note, but sometimes inspiring and thoughtful is more important than amusing. Not always! But sometimes…

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