The Zippo Manufacturing Company was founded by George Blaisdell in Bradford, PA, in 1932. That same year he created the first Zippo lighter, in an attempt to make cigarette lighters easier to use. He moved the chimney, added a sturdy hinged metal case, and offered the world an affordable $1.95 price tag. Zippos soon became very popular.
Zippos originally had the hinge on the outside, but shortly after they moved it to the inside of the case. These early models are very rare today.
Zippos were standard issue during WWII, as their sturdy windproof construction made them ideal for soldiers. But these wartime Zippos are hard to find, as many were left behind or lost. Many of the lighters made for soldiers were covered in a 'black crackle' finish that soldiers could carve names and drawings into with knives or pins. This 'trench art' can increase the value of a Zippo lighter significantly.
Zippo became an aesthetic icon, and by the 1950s was making custom-decorated lighters for different companies, clubs, and teams to be used as advertising or gifts. Businesses gave monogrammed lighters to their employees for celebrations of service or retirements. Introduced in 1956, the Zippo Slim added a thinner, sleeker lighter to the company’s lineup. Today, Zippos can be found with any number of designs, ranging from sports team logos to tattoo-style art.
In addition to the wide variety available, Zippos are popular among collectors because each lighter since 1955 has been stamped with a date code, and for pre-1955 lighters, the year can be identified by a number of features of the stamping.
Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)
Kensitas Silk Flowers
Truth in Advertising
Clubs & Associations
Other Great Reference Sites
Most watched eBay auctions
Recent News: Zippo Lighters
Source: Google News
Volunteers pick up trash in Sevier County for Earth WeekWATE-TV, April 21st
“We found a Zippo lighter which can be returned for a new one. They replace and repair. We found a car bumper,” said volunteer Carol Coats. They bagged it all up, more than 50 bags full, and hauled it away leaving The Spur sparkling. “I mean the...Read more
A sure bet: Bradford library 'Derby Gala' scheduled for May 2Bradford Era, April 21st
Attendees will watch the Kentucky Derby live on big screen TVs and bet on horses. A silent auction is also planned. There will be two live auction items as well, including a Zippo lighter/Case knife. The band “Earthquakers” will also perform music at...Read more
'Mad Men' recap: On forecasts, endgames, butterflies (and Carla, too)Newsday, April 20th
They have no clue what will come next, what will change everything in an instant, or what will clarify their true nature -- as a Zippo lighter during the Korean War clarified the nature of one Dick Whitman. The Cuban missile crisis, JFK's assassination...Read more
Memorial rededication recalls humble, valiant Marine from Blue Ridge SummitHerald-Mail Media, April 18th
BLUE RIDGE SUMMIT, Pa. – Cpl. Joseph Brubaker was an Ugly Angel who would ride down into combat on a UH-34 single-propeller helicopter to rescue the wounded and retrieve the dead in Vietnam. Members of the community, fellow veterans and a ...Read more
Cocoa man arrested for making meth after house catches fire, police sayWESH Orlando, April 17th
A police report said Warren bought acid, coffee filters and lighter fluid and used the items to make methamphetamine inside the home. “During the process, the cigarette fell out of his mouth and ignited the chemicals,” prosecutor Gary Beatty said. “I...Read more
Solid direction, cast keep "Velocity" propelling forwardazcentral.com, April 14th
It taps at your back," Alexandra says, rhythmically clinking a Zippo lighter against a jelly jar. Oh, and the jelly jar is filled with a highly combustible fluid. Alexandra has laced her entire Brooklyn apartment with Molotov cocktails because her...Read more
Zippo May Have Stalled In Suing Over Blu E-Cig IP, Judge SaysLaw360 (subscription), April 3rd
Loec further claimed Zippo hadn't heavily marketed its Blu lighter because of its poor performance, while Loec had spent almost $4.5 million to market its e-cigs by the time it received Zippo's cease-and-desist letter in March 2011, according to...Read more
The legend of Zippo lightersEconomic Times, April 1st
David Warfel , director, global marketing, Zippo Manufacturing Company is a man with many stories. Tell him you have your own personal story about that one 'click' lighter, and Warfel might roll his eyes. "I say, 'I am from Zippo' and everybody goes...Read more