multi-million dollar industry at the Olympic Games which began during the 1980 Winter Games at Lake Placid, U.S.A.
The term "Pinhead" was coined at this time as most people wore the pins on their hats.
Olympic pins had originated at the first modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896. They were made of cardboard and were for identifying athletes, officials and reporters.
Metal pins were used by jury members at the 1900 Games in Paris.
At Stockholm in 1912 the first souvenir Games pins were introduced. This helped raise funds.
Pin trading developed at Paris in 1924 when competitors were lodged in the first Olympic Village.
The first sponsor's pin appeared at L.A. in 1932. The message on the pin was "Arden Milk used exclusively by World's Olympic Athletes".
In Los Angeles again, 1984, Budweiser beer set up the first Olympic Pin Trading Centre and attracted 10,000 people a day.
Coca Cola sponsored the Trading Centre at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.
At Atlanta, the home of Coke, in 1996, about 63 million pins were sold.
Cash's-Aminco, the outfit making pins for the Sydney 2000 Games, has a pin club called Pinworkx Club at The Rocks, Sydney, telephone (02) 9251 6606.
The latest pin is the Sydney 2000 Torch Relay pin series by Trofe.