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Our History Might Just Surprise You!

We know how to have fun at Camargo. After all, they say that we only get old when we stop learning and playing. So we read, listen to music, enjoy Happy Hour, crafts, cards and each other.

Maybe it's because we’re fun-loving people who find joy in playing. Or maybe it's because our halls sit on the same hallowed ground as the inventors of Play-Doh. Creativity and play runs in our blood. Or so the story goes.

The Secret History of Play-Doh

"The year was 1933 and Cincinnati's Kutol Products was a soap manufacturer tasked with creating a cleaner that could take coal residue off wallpaper. A non-stick putty-like consistency worked perfectly. And that's the way it sold until the '50s, when natural gas furnaces didn't require wallpaper cleaner.

Kutol's Noah McVicker was faced with a problem: lots of putty, not a lot of need. His company's premiere product was bordering on obsolescence. Until his nephew Joe McVicker and Joe’s sister-in-law Kay Zufall stepped in.

Zufall was a nursery school teacher, and she realized her students enjoyed making art projects with the putty — and the cleanup was a lot easier than modeling clay.

And so Play-Doh was born."*

Kutol to Camargo

Kutol Products relocated over the years after it sold the wallpaper cleaner to Rainbow Crafts Co., which was then acquired by Hasbro, who owns Play-Doh to this day. The Kutol family moved the company from Cincinnati to the land we sit on today in Madeira and finally to Sharonville sometime after 2009, where they manufacture hand hygiene products.

You can read more about the iconic colored dough here and here.

And who knows? You may see a future activity on the Camargo calendar that involves Play-Doh. We have a legacy to carry on.

* excerpt from an article written by Kathrine Nero of the Cincinnati Enquirer, 'The secret history of Play-Doh, created in Cincinnati.'