|Born||Apr 13, 1891|
|Died||May 9, 1966|
|Known for||duct tape|
Stout worked at the Green River Ordinance Plant in Dixon, Illinois packing ammunition boxes. She recognized that the way ammunition boxes were sealed made them difficult for soldiers to open in a hurry. She suggested this idea to her bosses at work who didn't implement the change. On February 10, 1943, she wrote a letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt explaining the problem and offering a solution. Her idea was to seal boxes with a waterproof, tearable cloth tape which she created and tested at her job.
I suggested we use a strong cloth tape to close seams, and make tab of same. It worked fine, I showed it to different government inspectors they said it was all right, but I could never get them to change tape.— Vesta Stoudt to President Roosevelt, Feb. 10, 1943
Roosevelt approved of the idea which he sent to the War Production Board who wrote back to Stoudt.
The Ordnance Department has not only pressed this idea...but has now informed us that the change you have recommended has been approved with the comment that the idea is of exceptional merit.— War Production Board's Ordnance Department to Vesta Stoudt, March 26, 1943,
- "Vesta Oral Wildman Stoudt". Find A Grave. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
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- GIULIANI, DAVID (2014-04-21). "Sterling woman credited with idea for stronger tape". SaukValley.com. Retrieved 2019-01-20.