It is certainly more convenient to write these things in different media, so there must be an advantage to using them. Suzanne Snider, a journalist, researched the history of the Legal Pad and explains why it is so valuable to us as a culture. It started as a modest collection of scraps of paper – now the yellow-line legal block is a must for writers, musicians and, of course, lawyers. Madeleine Brand talks to Suzanne Snider, editor of Legal Affairs magazine, about the history of the Legal Pad. The origin of paper in legal form is somewhat murky. One possibility is to use 17 “x22” shapes to print paper during the period when Henry VIII was able to print paper. He was King of England. It was the largest size that could be easily transported. These sheets were known as fools` caps, which lawyers cut in half for their official documents, resulting in a 17 “x11” sheet of paper. This was eventually reduced to the smaller legal format we use today. Part of its appeal is the unwritten rule that legal notebooks are reserved for adults; Some people describe a sense of satisfaction when they finally reach the point where they are “demanding” enough to use. After all, legal notebooks are an important matter.
MS. SNIDER: And they were also extremely opposed to documents of legal length in terms of space efficiency. A few years later, in 1900, a local judge called for a design change for Holley`s notebooks, who had by then quit his job at the paper mill and formed his own firm, the American Pad and Paper Company. The judge wanted 1.25-inch margins to make room to comment on his own notes. This is not only the origin of the unforgettable margin of the Legal Pads, but also the moment when the real Legal Pad was born. At this point, we can assume that Holley exclaimed, “It`s alive!” Despite its seemingly glaring flaws, legal buffers are undeniably dominant. Chicago-based law firm Mayer & Brown admitted to using 15,324 legal blocks a year, according to one of its deputy directors. We have deciphered the numbers and that makes 41 towels per day and 1.7 per hour.
It`s both incredibly impressive and terribly unnecessary. No matter what you think of these statistics, the question arises “why are legal notebooks so popular.” Currently, Holley`s monstrous creation is one of the most popular disposable writing surfaces used to capture ideas. However, this may not be the case in the future, as some federal courts have banned legal-sized paper and many private law firms have committed to reducing their paper consumption by switching to digital filing, which can help eliminate a company`s 85,000 paper boxes stored in a warehouse. One of the main distinguishing features of the Legal Pad is the fact that it has specific margins. The American Pad and Paper Company claims that the edges of a typical legal block contain a 1.25-inch gap on the left side of the paper. One hypothesis is that color was chosen for those working in the legal profession because it stimulated their creativity and mental abilities. It also provided a background that contrasted very well with the black ink and gave a professional feel. Although its pieces of paper are not yellow, they are at the origin of what has become the legal block. That Thomas Holly was the one who came up with the idea of including lines in separate sentences is something we`re not sure about. It is likely that blue was simply the color that contrasted best with yellow, and therefore the lines of legal stamps are usually blue. It is assumed that a Legal Pad must also have a size of 8.5″ x 14″ the same size as the legal paper to receive a Legal Pad designation.
But this is not the case. Legal pads can be of any size or size, as long as they include the 1.25″ side vertical red line.” I need a legal stamp. You know what it is, but do you know what it means? Ms. SUZANNE SNIDER (Legal Affairs): Well, legend has it that it was invented around 1888 by Thomas Holley, who was 24 years old at the time and working in a paper mill in Holyoke, Massachusetts. And he had the brilliant idea to collect all kinds, which were a kind of low-quality pieces of paper from different factories, and sew them together to sell them at a reduced rate in the form of napkins. And then it evolved around 1900, when a local judge demanded that a margin be drawn to the left, and this was the first legal block. Well, in ancient times, cheap paper remnants were not bleached with a slight shade of yellow or pink color. Lawyers needed a lot of paper to track different cases, take notes, write drafts, etc. So they had to use a lot of paper for their work, and spending a lot of money on high-quality paper is not a wise thing to do from a financial point of view. Therefore, lawyers began to use custom legal blocks with yellow colors, and such notepads quickly became widespread.
In 1900, a judge asked Holly to add a red line along the left side of the paper so she could add additional comments to her notes. This distinct vertical line, always 1.25″ from the edge, makes a Legal Pad a Legal Pad. Regardless of the color, a legal block officially deserves this designation if it has that vertical line on the left. Everything else is just a notepad. MS. SNIDER: Well, that`s interesting, because the Legal Pad has enemies, apart from all the loyalists I mentioned. In 1982, Chief Justice Warren Burger banned legal-sized documents from federal courts. There was also a movement in Florida called Elimination Legal Files, or ELF. That was his acronym.
Companies often hand out sanitary pads in meetings with customers and others and don`t want to hand out cheap pads. In fact, notebooks are often customized with a company logo to make a good impression on attendees in the meetings that accompany them. With recycling now common across the country and more and more people needing optimism and inspiration in their lives, the right-wing yellow bloc could come alive again in the near future. Once upon a time, Ampad was the country`s leading legal notebook manufacturer. At their peak, yellow legal notebooks outperformed sales of white legal notebooks by 3 to 1. Since then, Ampad has experienced several bankruptcies and acquisitions by other manufacturers and they are not alone. One thing that can keep the paper industry alive is the increased use of packaging, although this does not help the legal buffer in the long run. BRAND: Can you be a legal pad and just be a modest 8 1/2 inches by 11? While we may not know the real answer as to why they are yellow, we do know the origin of the margin of a legal block.
Around 1900, a local judge asked Holley to add a vertical line on the left side of the paper to create a margin where he could take notes. These edges — also known as descending lines — are always red and 1.25 inches (3.1 centimeters) from the left edge of the page.