This 124 year old patent shows the right way to use toilet paper

Everybody poops. And that’s great! I mean, from a biological standpoint, it would be a really not great thing if you didn’t.

But what happens after you poop can be a real problem. Of course, I’m talking about toilet paper. Sometimes, it can make for a house that’s divided. Should it be over or under?

Okay, maybe not everybody thinks about these things. But I know for myself, it’s been a topic of conversation more than a few times.

I even told my girlfriend that it was a deal breaker at one point… But she called my bluff – it really wasn’t a deal breaker. Apparently it’s just one of those things that I think about that most people may not worry about.

But still, what is the “right” way to hang your toilet paper on the rod?

The question has transcended humanity, even landing its own Wikipedia entry.

But thankfully, we have the original patent filing from 1891 to answer this question.

Good game, “under” enthusiasts, but you’re wrong. Toilet paper should be set to be “over,” not “under.” What kind of barbaric heathens are you, leaving your toilet paper under, anyway?

Okay, okay… Touché, internet. Lest I forget that cats secretly rule us all. Thankfully, our three cats have never messed around with toilet paper… Yet. Though they do drive a hard bargain when it comes to feeding them soft food.

But, the Google patents database shows us further diagrams instructing us on how to use toilet paper:

It took not one, but six diagrams to show my incredible and amazing girlfriend that for once, I’ve always been right, and this is the way the universe wants us to hang our toilet paper on the rolls.

And according to Science Alert:

The idea for perforated toilet paper was originally patented by Wheeler’s Albany Perforated Wrapping Paper Company in 1871 and then re-patented again in a roll-form in 1891 as a way of preventing waste.

“Since the advent of rolls of paper…many devices designed to prevent waste have been patented; but all effort in this direction has been apart from the roll of paper-namely, in the construction of holders for the rolls provided with means to prevent free unwinding of the roll and cause the sheets to separate singly at their connecting points,” Wheeler wrote in his patent.

“My improved roll may be used on the simplest holders.”

So now it’s official – hang your toilet paper accordingly.


Written by Dan Broadbent

Science Enthusiast. Atheist. Lover of cats.

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