Richard Knerr
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Richard Parke Knerr (1925 - 2008)

Richard Parke Knerr
Born in San Gabriel, Los Angeles County, California, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 20 Sep 1952 (to Oct 1976) in Los Angeles County, California, United Statesmap
[children unknown]
Died at age 82 in Arcadia, Los Angeles County, California, United Statesmap
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Profile last modified | Created 3 Apr 2009
This page has been accessed 4,977 times.


Notables Project
Richard Knerr is Notable.

Richard Knerr and his partner, Arthur Kelso Melin, developed the hula hoop and the Frisbee fads in America. He and Spud co-founded the Wham-O Company, which produced these toys and others such as the Superball and the Slip 'N Slide.

In 1957, Richard learned of Australian children playing with twirled bamboo hoops around their waists in gym class. He liked the idea and developed it into a toy using hollow plastic. It sold for $1.98 each (equivalent to $21.54 today). By 1958 40 million hula hoops were sold and by 1960 over 100 million around the world.

Also in 1957, the Frisbee, a plastic flying disc became a lasting diversion, and even the basis of various sporting activities.


  • "California Birth Index, 1905-1995," database, FamilySearch ( : 27 November 2014), Richard Parke Knerr, 30 Jun 1925; citing Los Angeles, California, United States, Department of Health Services, Vital Statistics Department, Sacramento.
  • "United States Census, 1930," database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 December 2017), Richard P Knerr in household of Ervin R Knerr, South Pasadena, Los Angeles, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 1519, sheet 6A, line 50, family 165, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 175; FHL microfilm 2,339,910.
  • "United States Census, 1940," database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 December 2017), Richard Knerr in household of Edwin Knerr, Tract 475, South Pasadena, Pasadena Judicial Township, Los Angeles, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 19-514, sheet 7A, line 28, family 185, Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 - 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 243.
  • "California, County Marriages, 1850-1952," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 10 December 2017), Richard Parke Knerr and Florence Lois Kehiayan, 20 Sep 1952; citing Los Angeles, California, United States, county courthouses, California; FHL microfilm 1,283,812.
  • "United States Public Records, 1970-2009," database, FamilySearch ( : 23 May 2014), Richard Parke Knerr, Residence, South Pasadena, California, United States; a third party aggregator of publicly available information.
  • "United States Social Security Death Index," database, FamilySearch ( : 20 May 2014), Richard P Knerr, 14 Jan 2008; citing U.S. Social Security Administration, Death Master File, database (Alexandria, Virginia: National Technical Information Service, ongoing).

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Hello Profile Managers!

We are featuring this profile in the Connection Finder this week. Between now and Wednesday is a good time to take a look at the sources and biography to see if there are updates and improvements that need made, especially those that will bring it up to WikiTree Style Guide standards. We know it's short notice, so don't fret too much. Just do what you can.



posted by Abby (Brown) Glann

This week's featured connections are French Notables: Richard is 18 degrees from Napoléon I Bonaparte, 21 degrees from Gilbert du Motier de La Fayette, 21 degrees from Sarah Bernhardt, 35 degrees from Charlemagne Carolingian, 24 degrees from Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette, 19 degrees from Pierre Curie, 26 degrees from Simone de Beauvoir, 18 degrees from Philippe Denis de Keredern de Trobriand, 16 degrees from Camille de Polignac, 17 degrees from Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière, 18 degrees from Claude Monet and 22 degrees from Aurore Dupin de Francueil on our single family tree. Login to see how you relate to 33 million family members.