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5 Unknown Facts About Accountants That Changed History

It's November 10 - Happy International Accounting Day!

To celebrate this largely unnoticed holiday, we thought we would share a little insight into our industry.

Accounting dates back thousands of years, to the ancient society of Mesopotamia. Evidence even exists of the Egyptians performing audits (yikes!).

Fast forward to Italy, year 1494: Luca Pacioli (the Godfather of accounting) publishes the double-entry bookkeeping system we know and love today (think debits and credits). It's November 10th that marks the anniversary of his publication.

While modern software has largely automated all of the transactions we enter today, the double-entry method is still the backbone of your books.

And bookkeeping is what keeps our businesses running! They simply would not be able to operate without it. More than just for small businesses and large enterprises, accounting also runs behind the scenes of your everyday life - schools, churches, government - every institution, regardless of if there are goods being sold or employees being paid.


To celebrate the people of our industry, here are a few interesting facts from National Today about accountants and bookkeepers:

1) Accountants brought down Al Capone

After escaping so many other charges, Big Al finally went to jail for tax evasion, thanks to tireless FBI accountants. ​

2) An accountant wrote history's first words​

The oldest surviving example of written language anywhere dates from around 5,000 years ago. It is written in Sumerian cuneiform and reads: "A total of 29,086 measures of barley were received over the course of 37 months. Signed, Kushim." ​

3) Accountants helped write the Bible

​Before writing the Gospel that bears his name, St. Matthew worked as a tax collector. Another tax collector was Saul, who took the name Paul after his conversion and wrote several books of the New Testament. ​

4) ​An accountant invented bubble gum

Accountant Walter Diemer worked for the Fleer chewing gum factory and experimented with gum recipes in his spare time. He invented the modern formula for bubble gum in 1926 and was the first to market it commercially. ​The gum was pink because that was the only food coloring the factory had available.

​5) Accountants handle the annual Oscar vote

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences employs certified public accountants to tabulate all the Oscar ballots and declare winners. The Academy says that accountants are ideally suited for this task because of their reputation for objectivity and attention to detail. ​


We understand that number crunching isn't "fun", per se, but it doesn't have to make you miserable! Software like QuickBooks makes managing your books easy and painless. And with Simcoe Office Solutions, you get an exclusive rate on many apps and programs.

Interested in learning more about how bookkeepers can help your business? Check out our website for more information on bookkeeping and small business.


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