Why do we punch a hole in the corner of The Old Farmer’s Almanac? This is a common question that comes up this time of year! Almanac editor Heidi Stonehill gives us the “hole” story!
There is a hole drilled in the top left-hand corner of the paperback Old Farmer’s Almanac. Every wondered why? When did it start? And what do we do with the punched-out holes? These are deep questions.
It began in the late 1700s, when we made our earliest Almanacs. Readers discovered how useful the Almanac was in their daily lives and wanted it close at hand. So, it was a simple matter of taking a nail, punching a hole through the Almanac, tying a string around it, and then hanging it up in a handy spot, such as the barn or kitchen, or even the outhouse.
Then, about 100 years ago, after the technology became available, The Old Farmer’s Almanac had these holes put in commercially, to make it easier for our readers. So today, people still hang the Almanac up in their barn or kitchen, and even in their bathroom.
Then, after all the almanacs are printed, we’re left with nearly 400 million teeny tiny little pieces of paper.
That’ a lot of paper—which we do get recycled. (Although, they would make great confetti!)
So, the hole will allow you to put a string through the Almanac, and put it around your belt and take it to the garden; you can attach it to your backpack; or tie it around your telescope. In fact, you can take it just about anywhere!
Note: It’s the classic Old Farmer’s Almanac paperback, such as found at the newsstand, which features the hole. We also produce a hardcover edition and put no hole in it, of course. And we do a “softcover” version (same paper inside as the hardcover) that does not have a hole in the corner because it is too thick to punch.
We hope you enjoyed this Almanac trivia—and would love to hear where you put your Almanac!
P.S. You can find a copy of this year’s Old Farmer’s Almanac on Amazon, in our own Almanac Web store, and at your local retail store. See where to buy in your area!