As many of a certain age will remember, today’s omnipresent backpack wasn’t that widely available as recently as the 1970’s.  Obviously, that is no longer the case as book backpacks are now “ubiquitous in classrooms and on school buses around the country.”  How did a change of such seismic proportion occur?

Well, fortunately Slate’s Alan Siegel is on the case and his recently posted Can I Carry Your Books? recounts the rise of the backpack in all its glory.

(Thanks to John Riley of Gabriel Books for providing ATG Quirkies.)