The Public Paperfolding History Project

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The Fold and Cut Paper Parachute
This page attempts to record what is known about the origin and history of the fold and cut design known as the Paper Parachute. Please contact me if you know any of this information is incorrect or if you have any other information that should be added. Thank you.



As far as I know the first appearance of this design in the historical record is in 'The Boy's Own Toymaker' by Ebenezer Landells, which was published in 1859 by Griffin and Farran in London and by Shephard, Clark and Brown in Boston.


The arrow launched parachute also appears in a similar form:


In 'The Popular Recreator', which was published by Cassell and Co in London in 1873.



In 'Un million de jeux et de plaisirs' by T de Moulidars (a pseudonym of Jules Trousset 1842-1905), which was first published in 1880 and subsequently republished under the title 'Grande encyclopédie méthodique, universelle, illustrée, des jeux et des divertissements de l'esprit et du corps'.



In 'Cassell's Book of Indoor Amusements, Card Games and Fireside Fun', which was published by Cassell and Co in London in 1881.



As 'El paracaidas' in 'Repertorio Completo de Todos los Juegos' by de Luis Marco y Eugenio de Ochoa y Ronna, which was published in Madrid by Bailly-Bailliere e hijos in 1896.



In 'Travaux Recreatifs Pour les Enfants de 4 a 10 Ans' by Marie Koenig, which was published by Librairie Hachette et Cie in Paris in 1898



Instructions for making a simple form of the parachute appear in 'Le Livre des Amusettes' by Toto, which was published in Paris by Charles Mendel in 1899.


The design also appears:


In 'Les Bon Jeudis' by Tom Tit, which was published in Paris in 1906 by Librairie Vuibert.



In ' 'Petit Manuel de Travaux d'Amateurs' by H de Graffigny, which was published by Collection A L Guyot in Paris in 1909. Of the Paper Dart and the Parachute the author says, 'These are two small objects which most schoolchildren know how to make.'



'Paper Magic' by Will Blyth, which was first published by C Arthur Pearson in London in 1920.



Booklet 5 of 'Images a Plier', a series of 6 booklets published by Librairie Larousse in Paris in 1932.