History of Straw

The first known straws were made by the Sumerians and were used for drinking beer,[5] probably to avoid the solid byproducts of fermentation that sink to the bottom.[6][7] The oldest drinking straw in existence, found in a Sumerian tomb dated 3,000 BCE, was a gold tube inlaid with the precious blue stone lapis lazuli.[5] Others claim metal ‘sceptres’ discovered in Armenia in 1897 and date to the Maykop culture (3700 to 2900 BCE) as the oldest surviving straws.[8][9]

In the 1800s, the rye grass straw came into fashion because it was cheap and soft, but it had an unfortunate tendency to turn to mush when put in liquid.[5]

American Marvin C. Stone patented the modern drinking straw, 8+12 inches long[10] and made of paper, in 1888, to address the shortcomings of the rye grass straw.[11] He came upon the idea while drinking a mint julep on a hot day in Washington, D.C.;[12][13][14] the taste of the rye grass straw was mixing with the drink and giving it a grassy taste, which he found unsatisfactory.[5] He wound paper around a pencil to make a thin tube, slid out the pencil from one end, and applied glue between the strips.[5] He later refined it by building a machine that would coat the outside of the paper with wax to hold it together, so the glue would not dissolve in bourbon

Early paper straws had a narrow bore, to prevent seeds from clogging them.[10] It was common to use two of them, to reduce the effort needed to take each sip

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