What was the first item sold on amazon?

In reality, Amazon.com was established back in the summer of 1994. But Jeff Bezos, unlike other firms during the dot-com era, did not support "fast and dirty" product launches. Before Amazon's website went online to the public in July 1995, it undertook nearly a full year of intensive testing to develop the procedures and website that would eventually become Amazon.com.

A semi-private "beta" launch of the website as part of this testing process was virtually only open to the small number of Amazon workers present at the time.

what was the first item sold on amazon?

Shel Kaphan, the technical co-founder of Amazon who, together with Paul Davis, effectively constructed and designed Amazon's website and complete back-end, was a key figure among those early workers.

Before working for Amazon, Kaphan was employed at Kaleida Labs, an Apple and IBM joint venture that first specialized in CD-ROM production platforms before shifting its focus to the creation of object-based programming languages like ScriptX.

Who is the main programmer of ScriptX? John Wainwright was the person in question.

What was the first item sold on Amazon - (Amazon Quiz)

  1. Shoes
  2. Cycle
  3. Book
  4. iPhone

Answer: Book (Fluid Concepts And Creative Analogies)

Name of the first book sold on amazon

Whether by coincidence or design, Wainwright's order ended up being the first ever placed by and delivered to, someone who wasn't already an Amazon employee. Kaphan informed his former coworker Wainwright about Amazon's public beta test.

What was the first thing you ordered from Amazon, then?

a book by Douglas Hofstadter titled Fluid Concepts And Creative Analogies. Hofstadter is arguably best known for his fundamental work on symbolic systems and intelligence theory, Gödel, Escher, Bach, which is a milestone book in the area.

When someone questioned what the very first Amazon order was a few years back on Quora, all of this information came to light.

Wainwright's own response was as follows:

I believe I am the client referred to in the previous responses; on April 3, 1995, I did indeed purchase Hofstadter's Fluid Concepts (it is still there on my order history page!). I had heard that I could be the first customer who isn't an employee, but I couldn't confirm it. By the way, I still have the book and the authentic Amazon shipping label!

And it does appear that he did! This packing slip, which Wainwright gave, is the one you can see at the top of the post.


The Wainwright Building is a structure on the Amazon headquarters campus. There is a cute small plaque inside that explains the meaning of the building's name.

  • On the well-known Quora thread, one commenter suggested:
  • The truly amusing background detail is that when Mr. Wainwright ordered the book, it wasn't available.
  • Therefore, Jeff had to get the book at a nearby bricks-and-mortar shop so as not to let down his first client.

We discovered a gap, Bezos claimed. They had their systems set up such that you only needed to order ten books; you didn't need to receive ten books. So we discovered a specialized lichen book that they had in their system but had run out of. We started placing orders for the one book we desired and nine copies of the book on lichens. They would send us the required book along with a message apologizing that they were out of the lichen book.

Sadly, there is no proof for this tale. However, it suited Amazon's ad hoc working practices at the time. For instance, take into account this well-known tale from Bezos himself about how Amazon tricked book delivery systems to locate obscure titles its early clients frequently requested:

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