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1940s - The AN plug Debut
On March 15, 1943, the cover of Time magazine perfectly capsulized the amazing growth and increasing importance of our Cannon brand of connectors. World War II was raging, and the cover illustration showed Elmer Davis, Director of the United States’ Office of War Information, speaking into a microphone to symbolize his belief that “This is a people’s war, and the people are entitled to know as much as possible about it.”
The cover showcased two markets – communications and military/defense – where Cannon was beginning to compete in a big way in the 1940s and where we still remain a strong force today.
The microphone seen on newsstands across the country was equipped with Cannon’s audio connectors – and why wouldn’t it be? By that time, the Cannon Electric team had established itself as industry innovators by providing connectors for all types of emerging communications. Cannon connectors were part of the first radio microphones, the first black-and-white television cameras, the first sound movies – and our XL connector was used in the 1940s by the first radio broadcast networks.
When the Time cover hit the stands, Cannon wasn’t quite as well established in the military/defense market, but that changed with lightning speed. The first breakthrough was the development of a vital military specification connector for U.S. Army and Navy aircraft, which the military named the AN Series.
Cannon’s version of the AN Series connector – called the Tri-Services connector – set the standard for military aircraft connections and is the father of the modern day military specifications. Suddenly, Cannon Electric was an in-demand supplier for the American – and Canadian – military, and the company grew by leaps and bounds, both in terms of size, production and creativity.
In 1945, Cannon engineers designed the world’s first waterproof plug. At one point during the 1940s, it was estimated that every American was using a Cannon connector at least five times a day – to watch television and movies, listen to the radio, fly from here to there or fight for their country. During the war years, Cannon Electric became one of the five largest aluminum die casters in America.
Cars and planes. TV shows and Hollywood movies. A winning contribution to World War II. In the 1940s, our Cannon brand became part of the fabric of America and never looked back.