Bottle caps have had many names (crown cork, crown cap, or crown), and over 1500 patents to try to perfect a model. William Painter designed and patented all machinery necessary to manufacture the first bottle caps (which were not cork or wood) opening a business: Crown Cork & Seal in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1892. Painter's process of "pressing the cap tightly onto the bottle's flange and clamping it" became a desirable process. In 1931 Robert Smith brought this technology to Crawfordsville, Indiana. Smith began his business with $160 in a small lab on Pine Street.
To learn more interesting facts about your local heritage, visit the Carnegie Museum!