Margaret E Knight

Margaret Knight was born in York, Maine, U.S.A., on February 14, 1838, to James and Hannah (Teal) Knight. Ms. Knight and her brothers Charlie and Jim were raised by her widowed mother in Manchester, New Hampshire. Always interested in building and inventing things, Ms. Knight turned her attention to the machines in the textiles mills. Before she was a teenager, her first invention was put to use in the mills.

Ms. Knight moved to Springfield, Massachusetts, and took a job at the Columbia Paper Bag Company following the Civil War. It was here that she invented a machine to fold and glue paper to form satchel-bottom, or flat-bottom, bags. She studied the machines at the factory during the day and made drawings and models at night in the boarding house where she lived. Margaret Knight’s bag machine was patented July 11, 1871, as patent #116,842. This was a difficult achievement, as Ms. Knight had to defend her work against Charles F. Annan, a man who had spied on the machinist hired to make her model and been granted a patent for an identical machine.

Margaret Knight was one of the first women to hold a patent. Before passing away in 1914, Knight acquired as many as 26 patents in diverse industries. She also co-founded Eastern Paper Bag Company in Hartford, Connecticut.

The invention greatly impacted the paper industry, as satchel-bottom bags became a choice material for carrying and transporting goods. The large New York department stores of Macy’s and Lord & Taylor’s realized how they could utilize the flat-bottom bags to accommodate customer needs without having to take time to wrap a parcel with paper and twine. It was reported in Anne. L. MacDonald’s book Feminine Ingenuity that Knight’s paper bag machine replaced the work of 30 people and “attracted extraordinary attention in Europe and America.”

Today, in excess of 7,000 machines throughout the world produce flat-bottom paper bags, now known as “stand-on-shelf” or “self-opening sacks” (S.O.S). Major suppliers of these machines are H.G. Weber & Co., headquartered in Kiel, Wisconsin, U.S.A., two firms in Germany, and one each in France and Japan.

Paper bag machines today are producing 200 to 650 sacks per minute. End uses of S.O.S. bags include grocery and department stores, fast food restaurants, and bakeries. S.O.S. bags are also found in lunch rooms; on store shelves for consumer products, coffee, pet food, and charcoal; and at home for composting and yard waste.

Ms. Knight passed away on October 12, 1914, in Framingham, Massachusetts. She never married.

Illustration of Ms. Knight is from MARVELOUS MATTIE: HOW MARGARET E. KNIGHT BECAME AN INVENTOR by Emily Arnold McCully. Copyright (c) 2006 by Emily Arnold McCully. Reprinted or Used by permission of Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC.

Laxmi Niwas Bangur

Laxmi Niwas Bangur, affectionately known as “LN” among friends and family, was born on August 26, 1949, in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India. He received his bachelor of commerce degree from Calcutta University in 1970.He hails from the family of Bangurs of Kolkata, well known in India’s trade and industry for over a century. After graduation, he joined the family business with diversified responsibility and worked his way up to join the Board of Directors of the Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills (APPM) in 1985 and assumed its chairmanship in 1992.Under his leadership, APPM went through many major modernization projects covering pulp bleach plant, chemical recovery systems, and introduction of chlorine dioxide, a more environmentally friendly bleaching chemical. The plant capacity was raised to 160,000 metric tons per annum from 86,000 metric tons per annum.

Raw material was a major bottleneck for APPM. Visualizing the problem in the eighties, Mr. Bangur embarked upon an innovative and ambitious program of generating the requisite wood based fibrous raw material through a tree plantation program in collaboration with and cooperation of the local farmers by motivating and supporting them to utilize their marginal and degraded lands which were of low or no productive use for them. His pioneering initiative was started in 1989, integrating pulpwood-based farm forestry with the industry in seven (7) cyclone-prone coastal regions of India’s eastern coastal line with the Bay of Bengal. This dynamic approach of his not only allowed large tracts of marginal and degraded lands to be put to productive use but also provided some protection against cyclones, etc. The forestry focus was primarily on fast growing varieties of trees such as Subabul, Casuarina, and Eucalyptus. It also benefited the farmers by achieving high productivity per unit area on a continuing basis resulting in much-desired improvement in the socio-economic status of the small and marginal farmers and local inhabitants of these regions.

Over the years, around 120,000 acres (about 49,000 hectares) of marginal lands have been brought under plantation utilizing over 340 million seedlings while providing an excellent opportunity for rural employment. Simultaneously, developmental efforts were also made to harness biotechnology, including clonal propagation of wood species. This helped produce better fiber and higher yields on a sustained basis. Raw material is no longer a problem for APPM. In fact, Mr. Bangur’s initiative has given a new lifeline to the industry.

Mr. Bangur’s efforts were recognized in the years 1999 and 2000 when the mill was rated as the second greenest mill in India under a study program carried out by the Centre for Science and Environment with joint sponsorship of the Ministry of Environment and Forest, Government of India and the UNDP, and followed by the award “Vanamitra” (friend of forests) given by the Government of Andhra Pradesh for its exceptional contribution in the field of tree planting and wasteland development and utilization.

Mr. Bangur’s initiative and innovative efforts have also enabled the pulp and paper industry sector to morph into an honorable and responsible citizen of the society which otherwise is wrongly perceived as a destroyer of the forest wealth. Also, during the devastating tsunami of 2004, the high-density plantation of Casuarinas along the coastal belt helped contain the damages of life and property.

Mr. Bangur is a committee member of Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Bharat Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and a member of the Managing Committee of Bangur Charitable Trust. He is also Chairman and Managing Director of Maharaja Shree Umaid Mills Ltd. and Peria Kermalai Tea Estates as diversified business interests of his.

Mr. Bangur is married to Alka and together they have three children: one girl (Sheetal) and two boys (Shreeyash and Yogesh).

John Seaman Bates

John Seaman Bates was born in Woodstock, Ontario, Canada, on June 9, 1888. He received his college education at Acadia University in Nova Scotia and Columbia University in New York with a bachelor of science degree in 1909 and a doctorate in chemical engineering (the first in the school’s history) in 1914.While a student at Columbia, John Bates became involved with the paper industry by working two summers with Union Bag and Paper Company in Hudson Falls, New York, as a helper on the sulphite pulp digesters and as an assistant to the chief engineer. In the spring of 1914, he was asked by the Canadian government to become the first head of the newly created Forest Products Laboratories on the McGill University campus. After World War I, he became the first technical superintendent at the Kenogami mill of Price Brothers Co. Ltd. and two years later, the first chemical engineer of the Bathurst Co. Ltd. Mill in Bathurst, New Brunswick.

It was in the early 1920’s at the Bathurst Mill when he discovered and patented a unique method for clarification of green liquor. The interaction of SO2 with calcium carbonate released CO2, preventing scaling. The system stayed in place for 40 years.

In 1926, Dr. Bates began with Price Brothers as chief chemist, having responsibility for all their mills in the Saguenay River Valley in Quebec as well as their Donnacona newsprint mill. Starting in 1932, he joined the selling agent Price & Pierce Ltd. and spent seven years as technical advisor to the hundred paper and board mills in the British Isles. He later helped set up mills in Port Alberni and Nanaimo for Prentice Bloedel and H.R. MacMillan.

Following his long stint with Price & Pierce, Dr. Bates began his own consulting firm in 1951 from which he officially retired in 1967. During his consulting years he helped the British Columbia Forest Products Ltd. set up a bleached kraft mill in Crofton, helped the province of Saskatchewan construct a pulp mill, was involved with the establishment of four mills in the Maritimes, and assisted the three Maritime provincial governments in developing water supply management and pollution control.

As well as working directly for the paper industry over his entire career, Dr. Bates was also very active in industry organizations. He was a co-founder of the Pulp & Paper Research Institute of Canada; the founder, first chairman, and permanent honorary chairman of the Technical Section of the Canadian Pulp & Paper Association (CPPA); and held lifetime memberships in the Technical Association of the Pulp & Paper Industry (TAPPI) and the Engineering Institute of Canada. He was admitted to the Order of Canada in 1989. The Technical Section of the Canadian Pulp and Paper Association (now the Pulp & Paper Technical Association of Canada, PAPTAC), established their premier award as the John S. Bates Gold Medal in recognition of his many contributions, becoming the Memorial Gold Medal upon his death. He also received an honorary degree from the University of Ottawa in 1957 and an honorary degree from the University of New Brunswick in 1971.

Dr. Bates served in governmental roles in addition to his industry involvement. He was chairman of the New Brunswick Forest Development Commission (1955-57) and a member of the board of the New Brunswick Electric Power Commission (1958-60). He was chairman of the New Brunswick Water Authority (1958-67), the Nova Scotia Water Authority (1963-66), and the Prince Edward Island Water Authority (1966).

His first wife was Jeanette Ingraham of North Sydney, Nova Scotia, (deceased 1924) and second wife was Ruby Windsor of Bathurst, New Brunswick, (deceased 1969). He had three children (John, Mary, and David), three grandchildren (Jeanette, Margaret Ann, and Susan), three great-grandchildren (Karli, Elliott, and Brad), and one sister, Mrs. Marjorie (Frank) L. West. John Bates died in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada in 1991 at the age of 103.

Gary A Smook

Gary Smook was born in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A., on August 16, 1934. He received his education at the University of California, Berkeley with a bachelor of science degree in 1956.Upon graduation he began his industrial endeavor with Rayonier Inc. (1956-61) and then increased his expertise at Celanese Corporation (1961-66) and MacMillan Bloedel Ltd. (1966-74). During this introduction period he held various engineering, production, and managerial positions which advanced his knowledge in such areas as paper pressing, drying, kraft pulping, technical training and administration, and resource utilization. This led him to work for the British Columbia Institute of Technology for 20 years (1974-94), teaching pulp and paper technology courses.

While teaching at the British Columbia Institute of Technology and drawing on his extensive engineering and supervisory experience, he wrote Handbook for Pulp & Paper Technologists. The “Smook Book” soon became the “bible of the industry” for education institutions and became a run-away best seller. The “Smook Book” is now in its 3rd edition and has sold an unprecedented 70,000 copies over 24 years. It has been adopted as the standard textbook for most introductory pulp and paper courses throughout North America and the English-speaking world.

The “Smook Book” has also been translated into French, Spanish, Polish, Chinese and Korean. It was the major source of the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry’s (TAPPI) first interactive laser videodisc training course and their later successful CD-ROM entitled How Paper Is Made.

Shortly after the textbook was completed, he began writing a companion volume on pulp and paper industrial terms and completed this effort after six years with the publishing of his Handbook of Pulp & Paper Terminology in 1990. This book is now in its 2nd edition.

Mr. Smook retired from British Columbia Institute of Technology in 1994 but has remained active in the publishing field, serving as technical editor on two additional books: Paper Machine Design and Operation(Gunnar Gavelin, 1998) and Paper Science and Paper Manufacture (John Peel, 1999).

During his active years, Mr. Smook reported on his work in over 30 technical publications and was awarded the Weldon Medal of the Canadian Pulp & Paper Association’s Technical Section for his paper “Variables Affecting Press Performance on High-Speed Newsprint Machines.”

Mr. Smook was active in the paper industry associations, including Technical Association of the Pulp & Paper Industry (TAPPI), Pulp & Paper Technical Association of Canada (PAPTAC, formerly CPPA), Paper Industry Technical Association (PITA), International Association of Scientific Papermakers (IASPM), and the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia, receiving their Meritorious Achievement Award in 1994. He also served 10 years on the Joint Textbook Committee of the Paper Industry (TAPPI & CPPA) and culminated 10 years of service by being chairman of CPPA Professional Development Committee. He is a TAPPI fellow.

Mr. Smook and his wife, Hilda Wiebe, reside in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Fred Herbolzheimer Jr.

Fred Herbolzheimer was born July 4, 1921, in Wakefield, Massachusetts, U.S.A. He received his bachelor of science in pulp and paper technology in 1943 and master of science degree in chemical engineering, both from the University of Maine, the latter following three years of service in the army, including the 76th Infantry Division in Europe.Mr. Herbolzheimer started his career in the paper industry with Scott Paper Company in 1948 where he held numerous positions including technical director and production manager. He joined Thilmany Pulp and Paper Company in 1957 as production services superintendent. He was promoted to production manager in 1957; vice president of manufacturing, 1961; director, 1964; senior vice president, 1970; and to president in 1971, a position he held for 15 years. He was also appointed vice president of Hammermill (Thilmany’s parent company) in 1973, director in 1974, and senior vice president in 1980.

During Mr. Herbolzheimer’s tenure at Thilmany, the firm experienced rapid growth and innovation in manufacturing processes and market development. The first company president with a manufacturing background, Mr. Herbolzheimer introduced new management techniques including long term planning, cost reduction programs, and feasibility studies. Changes incorporated under Mr. Herbolzheimer’s direction are still being used today throughout the paper industry.

In 1963, for example, Mr. Herbolzheimer was responsible for the development of a new #13 paper machine featuring a reverse suction pick-up at the wet end. This machine was the first of its kind in the specialty paper market and allowed increased machine speeds, additional capacity, and reduced operating costs. This development sparked the firm’s growth in the specialty grades. Two additional machines were also added under his leadership. Paper machine #14 had the largest diameter dryer in the United States. Paper machine #15 used water that had been already used in the pulping process. The latter machine also led to entry into the light weight kraft and one-time carbonizing markets.

Mr. Herbolzheimer led his company through an expansion, acquiring two area manufacturing plants: Akrosil of Menasha, Wisconsin, (1975), and Nicolet Paper Company of De Pere, Wisconsin, (1985).

Environmental stewardship and community service were also major contributions by Mr. Herbolzheimer. He led Thilmany and area papermakers in efforts to comply with tough, new environmental standards to clean up the Fox River during the 1970’s and 1980’s, earning praise from government leaders. A few of his projects included a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant and a program to reduce air pollution. In addition, he drove the state’s Industrial Development Revenue Bond process with a 1973 Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling, enabling cities and private businesses to work together to reduce pollution of their common environment through a shared legal framework.

Mr. Herbolzheimer was also a strong advocate for community involvement, both from a corporate and individual standpoint. He served on the boards of various local institutions, including Lawrence University.

The success that Thilmany achieved during Mr. Herbolzheimer’s tenure positioned the firm to maintain its competitive advantage through subsequent acquisitions from major forest product companies such as Hammermill and International Paper Company.

Mr. Herbolzheimer and his wife, Janet Rood, reside in Shelburne, Vermont. His first wife, Phyllis, died in 1999. Their children are a daughter, Karen Hoel, and a son, Eric. Grandchildren include Nikolas, Jonathan, Christian, Emma, and Anna.

David A. I. Goring

David Goring was born in Toronto, Canada, on November 26, 1920. He studied at University College in London, England, earning a bachelor of science degree in chemistry in 1942. He continued his formal education, receiving a doctorate in physical chemistry from McGill University in Montreal, Canada, in 1949 and, in 1953, a doctorate in colloid chemistry from Cambridge University in England.He spent his scientific career in Canada, starting as an assistant research officer in the Maritime Regional Laboratory, National Research Council, from 1951 till 1955. In 1955, he moved to the Pulp and Paper Research Institute of Canada (PAPRICAN), starting with the rank of scientist, retiring in 1985 with the rank of principal scientist.

In 1971, he was appointed director of research at PAPRICAN, serving until 1977. He then served as vice-president, scientific and vice-president, academic from 1977-1983 and 1983-1985, respectively.

From 1960-2003, he was actively involved in teaching and training, first in the Chemistry Department at McGill University and later at the Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry Department’s Pulp and Paper Centre, University of Toronto.

Dr. Goring devoted the majority of his working life to the study and understanding of the structure of the three main components of wood: lignin, cellulose, and hemicellulose. His ground breaking, original work on how wood components are modified by chemical pulping has been of great importance to the pulp and paper industry.

His publications on the thermal softening of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin are the basis of much of the recent work on the effects of elevated temperatures in the thermo-mechanical pulping of wood. Dr. Goring’s work formed the foundation of the thermo-mechanical pulping industry. It was also important for the press drying, high temperature calendaring, and thermally induced bonding of webs in the production of paper sheets.

His original work on the modification of the surface of cellulose fibers in order to make them more reactive shed light on how they bond in paper sheet formation and how they bond to polymer coatings. This has led to the more efficient production of paper and new polymer coated paper products. Important patents have been granted in this field.

In 1973, Dr. Goring received the Anselme Payne Award from the American Chemical Society. In 1986, he received the Gunnar Nicholson Gold Medal Award, the highest award from the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI) that can be bestowed on an individual. He was awarded the John S. Bates Memorial Gold Medal from the Technical Section of the Canadian Pulp and Paper Association in 1995.

He is a Fellow in the Royal Society of Canada, the Chemical Institute of Canada, the International Academy of Wood Science, and TAPPI.

He supervised 23 Ph.D. thesis students and numerous others in the academic field. He has lectured by invitation at various universities and industrial R&D laboratories around the world. He has over 200 publications.

He married Elizabeth in August 1948. They have three children, James, Rosemary, and Christopher.