This model was patented on January 3rd, 1888. Two years later Stone was selling more straws than cigarette holders. In 1906 a machine was invented to roll the straws instead of rolling them all by hand, and the rest is history.
Now plastic straws are being banned in some places because of the harm caused to animals and the environment.
Thinking of my experiences with straws takes me back many years to Schmemier's Drug Store which had a soda fountain area. I sat on swivel stools and sipped cherry Cokes from a paper straw lifted from a straw container like the one below. Raise up on the silver nob then straws would splay outward so patron's could take one. Trouble with narrow paper straws was they didn't last long in soda bottles, because they became flimsy and unusable.
Then came the waxed straws, and they worked well at Bailey Farm Ice Cream where I drank chocolate ice cream sodas, my all time favorite fountain drink.
My kids had plastic straws, and also a handy dandy plastic cup with a built in plastic straw, and who can forget the curly straws?
Did you know Nestle made a paper straw with the interior coated with chocolate or strawberry powdered flavoring? Kids drank their milk through those straws in the 1950's.
Bill and I went to Florida one year and discovered an old fashioned malt shop. Oh the fun we had remembering when the manufacturer decided to wrap individual straws. Who me? Who my honey? Blow straws wrappers at one another? Make pea shooters out of our straws? Okay we did. And we are both proud to tell you we showed our grand kids how to fire a spit ball wad of straw wrapper at someone. We always cleaned up our mess though.