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The Safety Pin Turns 164: Here Are 12 Famous Fasteners (PICTURES)

10/04/2013 11:32 BST

On this day, just over 160 years ago, the little metal friend of the seamstress, the punk, the Scotsman and Orville the duck was born.

That's right, 10 April marks the official 'invention' of the safety pin.

Patented by Water Hunt in 1849, the American inventor is said to have conceived the idea for the prickless fastener whilst twisting a piece of wire around, worrying about how he was going to pay off a 15 dollar debt.

Using a piece of brass wire about eight inches long, he made a coil in the centre of the wire so it would open up when it was released. He then put a clasp at one end to shield the user from the sharp end.

Hunt sold his invention for $400 dollars to W. R. Grace and Company, which would convert to about $10,000 today. He was pretty short changed.

Safety pins have forged careers, saved lives and even shielded Queen Victoria from glimpsing a Scotsman's penis. Oh and they are also just really useful.

Take a look at 12 of the most famous amazing safety pins below.