It is generally accepted that the safety pin is the descendant of the fibula, a bronze brooch used by the Romans to hold together the many layers of their togas. The modern day safety pin was invented in New York by Walter Hunt in 1849. The idea came to him whilst twiddling with a piece of brass wire. Ater the invention of metal lathes in 1864, safety pin production was rapidly mechanised. It was Benjamin Bohin who developped the first machine in France, leading to a totally automatic production. Safety pins are so called because of the cap which covers the point. At a time when nappies, or diapers were made from cloth, they were widely used so are also known as nappy or diaper pins.