Historic lunchboxes from the 1880s. In the center photo you can see a tobacco box recycled as a lunch box. Around the 1880s, school children, who wanted to try to be like their daddies, fashioned similar boxes out of empty cookie or tobacco tins. According to the timeline, the first commercial lunch boxes, similar to the center photo, resembled metal picnic baskets decorated with scenes of playing children, came out in 1902.
Mickey Mouse was the first popular character to grace the front of a lunch box in 1935. However, the lunch box as a personal statement really took off in the 1950s, along with television. According to Whole Pop, executives at a Nashville company called Aladdin realized they could sell more of their relatively indestructible lunch boxes if they decorated them with the fleeting icons of popular culture.
In the weeks to come, we will explore modern day lunchbox options and insert tasty choices to carry along with you wherever you go. Whether you choose your vintage Scooby Doo, neoprene or a simple paper bag, get out your favorite vessels peeps, we’re going to fill them with wonderful treats from all around the globe!