When the summer begins to cool down and children and parents alike prepare for the start of the school year, there is one company that will undoubtedly find a place on every list of back to school supplies: Crayola Crayons.
Initially known as Binney & Smith, Crayola was founded in New York City in 1885. It was initially intended to be an industrial pigment supply company. The co-founders, cousins Edwin Binney and C. Harold Smith, had little interest in making educational school supplies, and instead created inexpensive black colorants used for making car tires black.
At the turn of the century, the company began producing slate school pencils and new, dustless chalk. The dustless chalk becomes so popular, in fact, that it received a gold medal at the St. Louis World Exposition.
While Binney & Smith reps visited schools to sell the pencils and chalks, they all noticed a reoccurring theme; Schools were badly in need of a high-quality, affordable wax crayon. Almost immediately, Binney & Smith made its industrial marking crayons smaller and added different colored pigments to the wax, creating a perfect school supply.
Crayola Crayons have been a staple of educational school supplies ever since.