Innovation Stories

Innovation Stories

Johnson & Johnson - Band-Aid®

Josephine & Earle Dickson
Band-Aids are a Staple in the Modern American household
Band-Aid Home First-Aid Kit
Josephine and Earle Dickson

Earle Dickson was employed as a cotton buyer for Johnson & Johnson when he invented the adhesive bandage in 1921. His wife, Josephine, frequently cut her fingers while preparing meals in the kitchen. At that time, a bandage consisted of separate gauze and adhesive tape that you would cut to size and apply yourself. Dickson noticed that the gauze and adhesive tape his wife used would soon fall off her fingers, and he decided to invent something to stay in place and protect small wounds more effectively.

Earle Dickson took a piece of gauze, attached it to the center of a piece of tape, and then covered the product with crinoline to keep it sterile. His boss, James Johnson, saw Dickson's invention and decided to manufacture adhesive bandages to the public and named Dickson a vice president for the company soon after. The trademark Johnson & Johnson adopted for this new product was BAND-AID®, a brandname which is today recognized worldwide.



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