Even More Things You Didn't Know About J&J
A Design Classic!
1. What do BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandages have in common with the @ symbol on your computer keyboard? They’re both part of the permanent design collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Here’s the link to the BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandage entry on the MOMA design collection website. (By the way, because the product is in the collection of an art museum, Earle Dickson, the inventor of BAND-AID®, is listed as the artist on the site!)
2. There was a fourth Johnson in the early days of Johnson & Johnson! William Johnson, a relative of Company founders Robert Wood Johnson, James Wood Johnson and Edward Mead Johnson, was listed as being in charge of the Company’s facilities in Highland Park, New Jersey – right across the river from New Brunswick. Here’s a photo from our archives of one of the Highland Park buildings he managed:
The Old Suspensory Mill in Highland Park, New Jersey
3. Decades ago, we built a plant in Texas that was completely underground. Here’s a photo.
Strange But True: We Have an Underground Plant
4. Two very popular consumer products from the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies started out as surgical products. Can you name them? LISTERINE® Antiseptic and the K-Y® Brand of products. LISTERINE® was first formulated in 1879 as a surgical antiseptic, and the K-Y® Brand -- originally including an analgesic (K-Y® Analgesic) and a surgical lubricant (K-Y® Lubricating Jelly). What else do they have in common? They both joined the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies as part of an acquisition: LISTERINE® was part of the acquisition of Pfizer Consumer Healthcare in 2006, and K-Y® was part of our acquisition of a small company called Van Horn & Sawtell in 1917. Van Horn & Sawtell made sutures and other surgical products.
Early LISTERINE® Bottles and K-Y® Analgesic
5. We once had a building in New Brunswick that had stained glass windows representing the different departments in Johnson & Johnson. The windows were created especially for the Company, and each window pictured a different employee selected to represent his or her department.
6. Johnson & Johnson has something in common with the Empire State Building and the Louvre. And that would be…architects. In the 1930s, Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, the architectural firm that had just finished building the world’s tallest building when it was completed in 1934 – the Empire State Building, was hired to build the one-story Personal Products Company plant in Central New Jersey. So what about the Louvre? I.M. Pei, the architect who built the modern glass and steel entrance to the Louvre, also designed and built our World Headquarters in New Brunswick, and the headquarters of our Consumer operating company, also in New Jersey.
Charles Heber Clark: Board Member and Humorist
7. In the early days of Johnson & Johnson, a member of our Board of Directors was ranked alongside Mark Twain as a writer and humorist, and he even may have inspired Twain to write A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. That Board member was Charles Heber Clark, who wrote under the pen name Max Adeler.
Joyce Kilmer: Poet, Author, Soldier...and writer for Johnson & Johnson
8. And while we're on the topic of writers, Joyce Kilmer, the famed World War I poet and son of Company scientific director Fred Kilmer, wrote articles for some early Johnson & Johnson publications. It would have been hard for him to refuse…his father was the editor!
Dr. Grosvenor's Bellcapsic Plaster: if the package looks like a cigar box, that's because it was originally a cigar box!
9. The Johnson brothers were very resourceful when it came to packaging the Company's early products. In our early days, Johnson & Johnson bought cigar boxes from the local cigar box manufacturer in New Brunswick, New Jersey, to use as packaging for some of our medicated plasters.
And if observant blog readers have noticed that these jars look like fruit jars, they would be absolutely correct! There was also a fruit jar manufacturer in New Brunswick, and we bought jars from them to package some of our sterile dressings. Why? Because the jars could be hermetically sealed to keep the dressings sterile. Besides reinventing existing packaging over 100 years ago, we also were one of the very first to use a strange new packaging innovation from another local manufacturer that's now a standard -- collapsible tubes. Here's JOHNSON'S® Shaving Cream Soap in a collapsible tube.