About 20 years ago I visited Mackinac Island with my wife and I remember looking at a beautiful cottage and on a sign out front it read,” Home of the Inventor of the Manila Folder”
for some reason that always stuck with me, The Folder seems like such a simple thing but I guess someone had to be the first to fold a piece of cardboard and stick a paper in it. Kinda like some caveman had to be the first to invent the wheel. The thing that stuck with me is not only did this person invent the file folder but they bought a house on Mackinac Island too, it must have had a pretty good life from a simple invention.
A few months ago I was on the Island and we went over to the cottages on the other side of the Grand Hotel, and I could not find the sign that had been etched into my memory. I took a bunch of Photos, and hoped I got a pic that I needed and set out to find out what happened to the folder guy.
I found a book called ” View From the Veranda” by Phil Porter and found the name of William A. Amberg. so off to see my know it all friend Google and I found THIS article about William Amburg and how he was the inventor of a file folder system and with his great fortune he and his wife, Sarah Agnes Ward, purchased the West Bluff’s Westover cottage on Mackinac Island which they remodeled in 1892, and renamed it Edgecliff Cottage.
William was king of the file folders for a few years but then his patent was challenged and the judge deemed it “intellectual Property” but he must have still made out pretty well on his folders to have such a beautiful place on Mackinac Island.
I always think of that house every time I am sticking papers into a manila folder and if you have read this something tells me you will too.
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