Inventor of Modern Condoms' Family Battle To Get Their Factory Back
Before Julius Fromm invented the modern condom, your options were pretty bleak and usually involved animal intestines. Thankfully, in 1912, he developed the method of dipping glass tubes in latex and rolling it off that created the thin, seamless latex condom we're all grateful for today. During the next decade, he also started installing the condom vending machines that saved everyone's lives in high school and basically became known as the king of condoms. People talked about Fromms the same way we talk about Trojans today.
At this point, it's important to mention that Fromm and his factory were German because then the Nazis happened. They forced Fromm to sell them his business at a fraction of its value, ostensibly for the war effort but also because Fromm was Jewish, and they couldn't just let him succeed at stuff. Fromm and his family fled to London with what was left of their lives, and he could only watch helplessly from a distance as his siblings were killed in concentration camps and their murderers handed his livelihood off to Hermann Goering's godmother. He died four days after celebrating the end of the war.
So they had to return the factory to Fromm's family, right? Wrong. After Godmother Goering died in 1939, her boyfriend inherited the business, and he wasn't letting it go without a fight. He claimed that no one forced Fromm to sell, and actually, he was the one who was victimized by the Nazis, but to be fair, nobody should have expected Hermann Goering's god-boy-toy to be a good person. The court actually ruled in 1951 that if Fromm's children wanted their family's business back, they had to pay off the current owner to the tune of 174,000 marks. We're too pretty to calculate exactly how much that is in today's U.S. dollars, but it's a lot. Fortunately, they managed to pull it together, presumably with a lot of teeth-gritting, and Fromms remains one of the leading manufacturers of personal rubber products.
Manna, regrettably, has a Twitter.
Top image: German Federal Archives, Maria Domnina/Pixabay