Bumper stickers are literally everywhere these days. Laptops, books, windows, tool boxes, and yes…bumpers. They also come in various sizes and are designed to share a multitude of messages. From current political issues to your favorite brand cooler, there is probably a bumper sticker out there that is right for you.
So where did the bumper sticker originate?
Even before the official “bumper sticker” there were “bumper signs” mostly composed of metal and attached by wire to the car. These bumper signs were primarily used to promote businesses.
After World War II, the developments in manufacturing and new adhesives led to the invention of adhesive backed paper. Likewise, the increased use of consumer vinyls following World War II led to the creation of the first adhesive backed vinyl. This paved the way for the bumper sticker as we know it today.
Many recognize a screen printer from Kansas city, Kansas by the name Forest P. Gill for printing the first bumper sticker. Sometime in the 1940’s he realized the marketing and advertising potential of printed vinyl. By the 1960 presidential election the bumper sticker was a leading form of promotion as it still is today.