July 7, 1928. Sliced bread goes on sale thanks to a machine created by American inventor Otto Frederick Rohwedder. When it went on sale it was advertised as “the greatest forward step in the baking industry since bread was wrapped.” The idea caught on quickly and was soon available nationwide, not only revolutionising the baking industry but also increasing sales of spreads and food items to accompany it. In January 1943, sliced bread was temporarily banned in the US as a war-time conservation measure, at which time a distraught housewife wrote a letter to the New York Times, stating “I should like to let you know how important sliced bread is to the morale and saneness of a household.” The ban lasted a little over a month before being repealed. Its continued success is evident in the fact that to this day the highest accolade a new invention can hope for is to be called “The greatest thing since sliced bread”!
Also on July 7: French troops invade Luxembourg (1543); Elvis Presley’s radio debut (1954); Boris Becker becomes the youngest player to win Wimbledon aged 17 (1985)
Born on July 7: Gustav Mahler (1860); Pierre Cardin (1922); Ringo Starr (1940);