Brooklynite Robert Gair/Gayer was a printer and paper bag maker in the 1870s. He invented the paperboard folding carton by accident: a metal ruler normally used to crease bags shifted in position and cut the bag. Gair found that by cutting and creasing paperboard in one operation, he could make prefabricated cartons. He ultimately got into the corrugated fiberboard shipping container business in the 1900s. His idea was developed and utilized by E. S. & A. Robinson with whom he had long-term business dealings. Gair founded a paper empire and occupied several buildings in the area, many of which still bear his name.
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