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Bakelite (/ˈbeɪkəlaɪt/ BAY-kə-lyt, sometimes spelled Baekelite), or polyoxybenzylmethylenglycolanhydride, is an early plastic. It is a thermosetting phenol formaldehyde resin, formed from a condensation reaction of phenol with formaldehyde. It was developed by the Belgian-American chemist Leo Baekeland in New York in 1907.
One of the first plastics made from synthetic components, Bakelite was used for its electrical nonconductivity and heat-resistant properties in electrical insulators, radio and telephone casings and such diverse products as kitchenware, jewelry, pipe stems, children's toys, and firearms. The "retro" appeal of old Bakelite products has made them collectible.
Bakelite was designated a National Historic Chemical Landmark on November 9, 1993 by the American Chemical Society in recognition of its significance as the world's first synthetic plastic.

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