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Sure you know insurance? Five insurance fun facts from the past

Since insurance plays such a large role in the mid-Michigan region — with numerous industry-known names, such as Jackson, AF Group and Delta Dental, calling the region home — it stands to reason that a few tidbits of industry trivia and fun facts should be common knowledge in the area. Let’s see how much you know.

Fire of London

The Great Fire of London that swept through the central portion of the city from Sept. 2-6, 1666, is often cited as the impetus behind today’s modern property insurance. The blaze started at a bakery on Pudding Lane and quickly became a raging firestorm. In 1680, the Fire Office was established to help insure properties. By 1690, 1 in 10 London homes was insured.

Founding Father of Insurance

Ben Franklin is defined by a lot of things: statesman, author, inventor, diplomat and unique hairstyle among them. However, this Founding Father is also the founding father of the first U.S. insurance company. In 1752, Franklin and other leading citizens founded the Philadelphia Contributionship for the Insurance of Houses from Loss by Fire.

Body of Work

We’ve all heard about celebrities insuring parts of their bodies. Supermodel Heidi Klum insured her legs for $2 million. The apparently immortal Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards insured his hands for $1.6 million. Singer and actor Jennifer Lopez insured her derriere. Among celebrities, the most commonly insured body parts include vocal cords, legs, hands and fingers.

Padre for Life

Matt LaChappa never pitched in the major leagues, but he suffered a heart attack while warming up in the bullpen for the San Diego Padres minor league affiliate. He survived, but the condition meant he would never work again; however, the Padres essentially provided him with a contract for life so his family would never have to worry about having the critical medical insurance LaChappa needed.

Underwriting Nessie

In 1971, whiskey manufacturer Cutty Sark offered 1 million pounds to anyone who could capture the legendary Loch Ness Monster of Scotland. Lloyd’s of London agreed to underwrite the contest under the condition that it would get to keep the legendary sea creature. Nessie, of course, proved to be a no-show and is presumably still lurking beneath the waters of Loch Ness.

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