By Mary Bellis
- Ole Kirk Christiansen and his son Godtfred Kirk invented LEGO.
- In 1932, Ole Kirk Christiansen, master carpenter and joiner, founded his carpentry business in the village of Billund, Denmark to make stepladders, ironing boards and wooden toys. The wooden toys became Ole's most successful product.
- The company adopted the name LEGO in 1934. LEGO is formed from the Danish words "LEg GOdt" meaning "play well". Ironically, in Latin the lego means "I study" or "I put together".
- In 1947, the LEGO company was the first in Denmark to buy a plastic injection molding machine for making toys.
- A forerunner of the plastic LEGO bricks was Christiansen's Automatic Binding Bricks, created in 1949. They were sold only in Denmark. In 1954, the bricks were renamed "LEGO Mursten" or "LEGO Bricks".
- On May 1, 1954, the word LEGO was officially registered as a trademark in Denmark.
- In 1955, the company launched the "LEGO System of Play" with 28 sets and 8 vehicles.
The current LEGO stud-and-tube coupling system was patented in 1958 (Design Patent #92683). The new coupling principle made models much more stable.
Imagination is the key to this building systems.