Notes on: the backpack

One of the world’s oldest accessories, the backpack dates back thousands of years. Breakthroughs in design tended to come from the military, who needed to make it as user friendly as possible, but it was a hiker who changed the backpack into what you see today.

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– The earliest backpack known to man was found on someone from around 3300 BC, consisting of a sack with two shoulder straps and a large wooden outer frame.

– Like most things in menswear, the rucksack was used by several military forces.

– The term backpack was coined in the 1910s in the United States, while rucksack was originally came from Germany - the phrase comes from ‘der Rücken’ which means ‘the back’ in German.

– In Arnold Schwarzenegger's 1990 blockbuster, Kindergarten Cop, Dominic's backpack saves his life when he falls from a radio tower.

– It was hiker Dick Kelty, who welded an aluminium frame to his backpack in 1952 (frames were external prior to this) that created the bag as we know it today.