The drinking straw was invented and patented by an inventor named Marvin Stone. Stone's paper drinking straw patent was granted on January 3, 1888.
While Marvin Stone's straw was the first patented drinking straw, people did use straws before Stone's invention, in the form of hollow rye plant stems. The rye stems fell apart, affecting both the texture and flavor of drinks. Stone's drinking straw was made from paper tubes coated in paraffin. The first patented drinking straw was 8.5-inches long. Stone also invented a machine for rolling paper straws, which was also used for making radio components. Joseph Friedman enhanced straw construction with a 1936 patent application that involved adding scores that make it easy to bend the end of a straw.