VR photograph of an Avatar to illustrate the story Hullaba Lulu by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

10 Everyday Items invented in the 1920’s

Frozen Food

Clarence Birdseye worked as a fur trader in Canada. He saw that fish caught during the winter froze almost immediately after being pulled from the water. Birdseye soon realized that he could leave the fish frozen for up to a month while retaining the flavor. Read more

The Television

The television was invented in 1925 by John Logie Baird. The first experimental Television broadcast in the US. was in 1928. Read more

Black-and-white photographs Date: 1934 Topic: Television
Zworykin Kinescope, 1929

Traffic lights

The traffic light was invented by William Potts in 1920 as a way to direct traffic at 4 way stops. Read more

The Pop-up Toaster

Charles Perkins Strite invented the pop-up bread toaster in 1919, and received a patent for it on October 18, 1920.  Read more

Kool Aid

Edwin Perkins in Nebraska invented Kool Aid in 1927.
Read more

Cotton Swabs

The cotton swab was invented by Leo Gerstenzang in 1923. He sold
his invention under the name of “Baby Gays.” Read more

Bubble Gum

Walter E. Dieme invented bubble gum in 1928.  Read more


Alexander Fleming accidentally discovered penicillin in 1928.
Read more

Vitamin E

Herbert McLean Evans and Katherine Scott Bishop discovered Vitamin E
in 1922.  Read more


Sam Foster invents sunglasses in 1920.  Read more

Now get your glad rags on and head over to Teagan’s Books for episode 4 Hullaba Lulu!

VR photograph of avatars waiting in a virtual train station to illustrate the story Hullaba Lulu by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
Lulu, Gramps, Rose, and Valentino wait for the train

Is someone gonna be Left holding the bag?

Check it out.

I gotta go see a man about a dog

Graphics (c) Rob Goldstein 2018

31 thoughts on “10 Everyday Items invented in the 1920’s

  1. So much to learn here! The ’20s was full of great inventions, judging from this list. I’m loving your illustrations for the Hullaba Lulu series, Rob. I just read installment #4 from Teagan and you saw you gave her electoplasm as one of the 3 things – you two are a dynamic duo ♥

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Aha, that old Foster Grant commercial comes to mind! And thank goodness Mr. Potts had the good insight to come up with traffic lights. I’m sure he had no conception of just how badly the world would need them decades later. 🙂


  3. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:

    If you have been following Teagan Geneviene’s Jazz Wednesdays you will no doubt have admired the art work of Robert Goldstein which certainly enhance and complement the fabulous story by Teagan.. In the first of my usual reblog of this week’s episode.. here is some nuggets of information from Robert on some of the inventions from the 20s, that we take so much for granted today. #recommended.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It was another great episode with your stellar artwork and Teagan’s fab story-telling over at her blog. A nice look too at items invented in the 20s. I love picking up tidbits like this 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

      1. That’s an interesting way of looking at it. The 1960s have fascinated me for a number of different reasons. Maybe I need to learn more about the 1920s

        Liked by 2 people

  5. This is so fun, Rob! I updated Chapter 4 to include a link to this post. I’m always learning more about the 20s. Now I’m just itching to give Lulu some bubblegum! 😀 Sharing this everywhere. You’re the monkey’s eyebrows! (Yes, I’ve learned new 20s slang for “you’re fabulous” — several new ones.)

    Liked by 1 person

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