History 5 Lesson 140

Diesel Engine 

Rudolf Diesel was born in France in 1858. He Went into engineering school when he was 14. He began experimenting with ammonia engines. Invented Diesel engine based on Carnot cycle in 1893. Diesel engines don’t need a spark to ignite. It Uses hot compressed air. Diesel fuel specially designed to work in Diesel engines. More fuel efficient and reliable than gasoline engines. It produces high torque at RPMs. The commercial world brought into Diesel engines immediately in 1894. Built 23 HP engine in 1896. Diesel-powered ships appeared in 1903. Germas built diesel-powered U-boats in 1912. Diesel engines began replying to steam locomotives in the 1910s.


Several mouse traps had been built in the 1800s. James patented a trap in 1879. “Little Nipper”  patented in 1898 in Britain. William C. Hooker invented the modern mousetrap in 1894. Mouse Traps kill mice. Spring-loaded bar swings down and breaks the neck of the mouse. The traps effectively eliminate the mice. It prevents further spread of disease from the mice. Patent holders sold to bigger companies. Hooker and Mast manufactured improved versions. Over 4,400 patents developed from 1838 to 1996. 


Marconi was born in Italy  in 1874. He became interested in Hertr’s experiments. Noticed no one applying waves practically. Applied them to wireless telegraphy. He built his own transmitters at home. He invented the radio in 1895. Radio waves are eaunchent from antennas. From 3 KHZ to 300 GHZ. AM and FM are important. Amplitude modulation changes the wave’s strength. Frequency modulation changes the wave’s frequency. AM is good for voice FM is for music. It transmits to multiple listeners at once. Other methods besides AM and FM. Italy wasn’t interested at first. The British were interested. Public lectures by the British government made Marconin world-famous. Gained publicity from the Titanic accident. 

Semi-Automatic Shotgun

John Browning was born in Utah in 1855. He built his first rifle in 1878. Winchester purchased this model from Browning. Browning developed lever action rifles and pump-action shotguns. He invented the semi Automatic Auto- 5 shotguns in 1898. The semi-auto shotgun automatically loads the next shell after firing. There were several methods for doing so. Easier and quicker to fire shotgun rounds. Advertised to hunters and sportsmen. Was legendary by the 1940s. Manufactured for 100 years until 1998.         

History 5 Lesson 130

Light Switch 

John Henry Holmes was born in England in 1857. Joseph swan developed an early light bulbs company.  Holmes attended Swan’s demonstration. Holmes invented the light switch in 1884. Light switches make it easy to conroe circuits. Instantly turned it on or off. Safe prevents arcing and fire hazard. Switch cna control larger relays or switches for more high-powered circuits. William J. Newton extended Holmes’ invention to toggle switch. He was installed by builders. It was required by building and electric codes. 


William Jenney was born in 1832 in Massachusetts. Learned engineering in France. Fought in the Civil War (North). He married in 1867. Invented a skyscraper in 1884 after discussion with his wife. Skyscraper: 328 feet tall or more. Replaces load-bearing wall with load bearing steel frame. Elvatos is crucial to skyscraper design. Strong foundation keeps it safe during earthquakes. Increase population density in popular areas. The Home Insurance Building was the first skyscraper. Others quickly followed. Chicago and New York were the focus of skyscrapers. Moderate success in Europe initially. 


Josephine Chochrane was born in Ohio in 1839. Got married in the 1850s to a business owner. They hosted large partes on fine china. Josephine wanted an easier way to clean dirty dishes. She invented dishwashers in 1886. It automatically cleans dirty dishes. The operation is more complex. Racks hold dirty dishes. Jets spray them with hot water. This sterilizes the dishes. Josephine sold them to her friends first. She then showed it off at the 1893 world’s hair in Chicago. Commercial and dining industries were interested. began making their way into homes in the 1950s.   

Electromagnetic Waves

Heinrich Hertz was born in 1857 in Germany. Studied engineering with Jelmhotter in Berlin. Hertz thought it was too difficult at first to prove Maxwell’s waves. But he noticed something by accident. Proved the existence of electromagnetic waves in 1887. Electromagnetic radiation that propagates through space. Traveling at the speed of light. Electric and Magnetic fields. They can carry information. Useful in the medical field. Hertz didn’t think they would be useful. Died at 36 years old. Others picked up his work. Wireless telegraphy invented by 1894.      

History 5 Lesson 125

Light Bulb

The arc lamp required too much power. Edison tried 3,000 different versions of the light bulb. He tested 6,000 kinds of plant matter for filaments. Edison invented the incandescent bulbs in 1879. Incandescent lights are glass tubes with metal filaments inside. Filament heart-resistant tungsten. The metal “evaporates”. The vacuum increases filament lifespan. Inert gas reduces evaporation, it powers bulbs to scatter light, it lights up dark areas cheaply. They replaced gas lamps in theaters. Edison rapidly expanded his power grid in the US. New models have the same light, less cost. Good light improves appearance in mirrors. 

Cash Register

James Ritty was born in 1836 in Ohio. He opened a saloon in 1878. Ritty’s employees were stealing. He gained inspiration while on a boat ride to Rurope. Ritty invented the cash register in 1879. Cash registers ring up transactions. It guards the cash drawer. It corrects change calculated for customers. Produces two sets of documentation. It reduces the cashier skill set, reduces errors, and prevents theft. Ritty’s machine “registered” each transaction audibly. National cash Register added paper receipts Improved marking by identifying customer hot button: theft. Established American Selling Force. Controlled 95% of markert by 1911. 


Warren Johson was born in Vermont in 1847. He became a science professor when 34. Johnson invented the thermostat in 1883. Thermostats regulate temperature. Used with air conditioning systems. Two metals expand at different rates. Mercury switches company founded in 1885. Developed a multi-Zone thermostat in 1884. It was used in egg incubators.

Steam Turbine

Charles Parsons was born in England in 1854. Assisted his father in astronomical work. Learned shipbuilding and weapons manufacturing. He then moved into electrical machinery in 1884. Inspired by contemporary design invented the steam turbine in 1884. Steam turbines convert heat into rotation. Multi-stage turbines are efficient. Power plants produce steam. The blades extract heat and lower the steam’s pressure. Complex blade designs. Makes bulk power productions cheap. Parsons founded a company to manufacture the turbines. Westinyhouse became interested. 

History 5 Lesson 120


Alexander Graham Bell was born in Scotland in 1847. His mother’s deafness inspired him to study acoustics. Bell thought a German had sent sounds over electrical wires. Bell used a reed system to transmit sound through wires. He received confidence from Joseph Henry in 1878. Patented the telephone in 1876. Telephones allow people to talk to each other remotely. DC voltage supplied for POTs at the center office. He made instantaneous voice communication. Bell made the first phone call in 1876. He put on a public demonstration. The Western Union declined to buy the patent. Founded Bell Telephone companion in 1874. AT and T became the largest corporation in the world.  

Carpet Sweeper   

Melville Bissell was born in New York in 1843. He opened his own grocery store. He then opened a crockery store in 1870 with his wife. Recession struck in 1873. Bissell invented the carpet sweeper in 1876. It was a mechanically powered “vacuum”. Adjustable height for different floor types and better cleaning action. They were quite easy to use. He had trouble getting started. He founded the Bissell company into the sweepers. Bissell died in 1889 and his wife took over operations. Exaned the company overseas. 


Thomas Edison was born in Ohio in 1847. His mother trains hom to be a self-learner. Edison entered the telegraph industry after saving the life of a small child. He wondered if he could record AND playback sound. He invented the phonograph in 1877. Ethes waveforms into dic surfaces. Tone arms pick up bumps and valleys to vibrate membranes (Speaker.) Physical amplitude and frequency converts into electrical amplitude and frequency. Edison first thought businesses would be the target market. Phonograph parlor opened in 1889. Alexander Graham Bell improved the invention. Breakthrough with vinyl records fed to radio popularity. Early artists had to record hundreds or thousands of takes. Records were being sold in pharmacies.  

Motion Pictures

Edward Muggeridge was born in England in 1830. Providentially enlangland in stagecoach accident. He became a photographer in 1866. Auracted interest in Leland Stanford. He invented motion pictures in 1878. He learned that fast-moving images give the appearance of motion, after he took some pictures of a horse loping. Sound and music are symed in the film. One movie= 10,000 feet of film. This allows us to create immersive entertainment. Muybrdige’s work was advertised in Scientific American. Thomas Edison got invaded after meeting with Muybeidge in 1888. Adopted the standard 35mm film and released his kinescope in 1894. Innovators moved to escape Edso’s legal grasp. First Hollywood studio built in 1911. TV put pressure on film in the 1950s.          


History 5 Lesson 115

Riveted Blue Jeans 

Levi Strauss was born in 1829 in Germany. Family entered the dry goods business. Moved to San Francisco during the Gold Rush. Strauss sold fine goods. Jacob Davis was a talented tailor. He installed rivets in pants. Together with Starauss, invented blue jeans in 1873. Blue jeans are made from denim. More durable than other kinds of work pants. The jeans were blue because of indigo dye. Which makes the pants softer over time. Davis managed the factory. Promoted the rivets in their advertising. Spread as people saw railroad workers wearing them. Received another boost from Dude Ranch Craze. 

Fire Sprinkler 

Congreve invented a manual sprinklers system in 1812. Maxim invented an automatic sprinkler in England, but it didn’t catch on. Henry Parmallee was born in Ohio in 1812. He faced high insurance costs for his piano factory. Invented the automatic fire sprinkler in 1874. Fire sprinklers advise automatically. It can detect heat using heat-sensitive elements. High-pressure water released when the element breaks. Only sprinklers closest to the fire are activated. Parmalee had good success in the US. Had to educate insurance companies in Europe. Low adoption by 1883. Frederick Grinnel improved Parmalee’ design in 1881. 

QWERTY Keyboard 

Christopher Latham Sholes editor in wisconsin. Prints letters onto paper when keys pressed. Sholes secured an investor. Sholes secured an investor. Sholes continued to refine the device. Invented the QWERTY keyboard in 1878. Standard Keyboard layout. Optimizes typing speed. 100 words per minute. Spread as Remington models sold. Competitors created alternate layouts. Remington sold the typewriter business to what became Remington Rand. 

Dental Drill 

  The clockwork drill was invented in 1864. Air drill was invented in 1868. George Green invented the electric dental drill in 1875. Vital for fixing tooth problems. Used in filling cavities. Removes decay. Primary benefit: Speed, it caused less pain and stainless was sanitary.       

History 5 Lesson 110

Clothes Hanger

There’s little info on the clothes hanger. O.A. North invented clothes hangers in 1869. Clothes hangers store our clothes. Their shapes help keep them from wrinkling. There are various kinds of hangers. There are extra features for folding pants over. There are clips for hanging pants and dresses. It became important in small New York apartments. Albert Parker invented a wire hanger in 1903. He improved his design and asked fellow employees to try. Clothes hangers were used in department store displays. 

Rotary Can Opener 

William Lyman was born in Connecticut in 1821. He apprenticed to a mentor-making company. He developed metalworking skills. Lyman invented several products on the side. He invented the rotary can opener in 1870. Can openers simplify opening tin cans. It uses gear wheels to handle wing nuts to grip the can. Lyman’s version punctured the center of the top. Modern versions grip the can and turn it as you turn the wing nut. Allows most anyone to easily open sealed cans. Tin cans first supplied food to troops. Civil war soldiers opened condensed milk with a manual can opener. Then an improved version appeared in 1925. 

Mail Order Catalog

Aron Montgomaery was born in New Jersey in 1844. He became a shoe salesman. He moved to Chicago at 21 and learned of rural complaints. Montgomery devised an idea to improve the rural service. He invented the mail-order catalog in 1872. Allows people to shop from home. The mail order catalog is a publication that contains listings of merchandise. Products are cheaper in catalogs than in general stores. Placed orders over the phone or through the mail Catalog companies rented mailing lists. Ward wrote all the copies for his catalogs. He focused on distrusting rural farmers. Featured over 20,000 items in just 20 years. Created the “Satisfaction guarantee or you get you money back” Policy. 


Chester Greenwood was born in Main in 1858. Ice skating and wind were brutal on the ears. So are headphones if the music’s it turned up too loud. But that’s getting off topic. Greenwood was a pro life inator. He invented earmuffs with help from his grandmother in 1873. They keep our ears warm in cold and windy weather. Thermal earmuffs traffic heat in. Acoustic earmuffs protect ears from hearing damage. I have some that I use when we go to the shooting range. Again kinda off topic. Noise-cancelling headphones reverse incoming sounds. They allow us to work in harsh conditions. Greenwood built a production factory. Farmisgtom celebrates Greenwood’s earmuff every year. Acoustic earmuffs appeared for WW2 pilots.                

History 5 Lesson 105

Air Brakes

George Westinghouse was born in New York in 1846. He joined the army during the Civil War. He invented a portable steam engine. Invented the air brake system for trains in 1869. System consisted of a tank valve and piping. Steam posted drives brake shoes against the wheel. The shoes must be operated simultaneously. Wetimahouse’s brake was fail safe. Brakes are powered from an on-car air tank. Reduced operators and increased passenger safety. Began making campaigns to generate orders. He built a demonstration model. Invented important railroad officials on board a live demo unit. A horse-drawn wagon was on the tracks and the brakes saved the day. 

Traffic Lights

JP Knight was born in England in 1828. He was a talented railroad traffic manager. Improved passenger trips. 1100 people were killed in traffic accidents in London in 1866. Knight invented the traffic light in 1868. Traffic lights regulate the flow of traffic. Create order by establishing rules. There are other forms of traffic lights too. Knight’s lights were gas lamps. The idea spread to the US An electric traffic appeared in Ohio in 1914 . Modern 4-way, 3-light signals appeared in 1920. Computers linked to the light in the 1950s. 

                Tape Measure

Alvin J. Fellows was born in Connecticut. A sering tape measure was invented in England. It was used for surveying. Fellows improved this tape. He invented the tape measure in 1868. Tape measures are flexible rulers. The tape is wound around a cylinder for compact storage. There are some heavy duty ones used for construction. Tape measures are lined with unit demarcation. Ads placed in the newspaper. Improved model sold to Stanley in 1920s. The ads focused on featuring and unique names to set them apart from competitors. 

Pipe Wrench

Daniel Stillson was born in New Hampshire in 1826. Learned how to use machine tools. Developed pipe wrench in 1869. Hasn’t changed too much in over 100 years.  Designed to grip soft iron pipes. Still sold his patent and made $80,000 in his lifetime. Trimow became a major manufacturer in the late 1800s. Advertised it’s wrench’s ability to grip pipes. And it’s replaceable plates.    

History 5 Lesson 100


Alfred Nobel was born in 1833 in Sweden. His father made weapons for Russian Tsar. Alfred studied chemistry in Paris. He learned about explosives from his father. His younger brother was killed in an explosion. He invented dynamite in 1867. Very powerful explosive “dynamis”.  Stabilizes the nitroglycerin. Other chemicals provide other benefits. Packaged in cylindrical cardboard tube. IT was used in construction demolition. Could be shipped across state lines. Spread to mining. 


Charles Goodnight was born in  Illinois in 1836. He joined with the Confederacy then with Loving. They drove cattle from Texas. Invented the chuckwagon in 1866. “Chuck” Is slang for food. Chuckwagon= mobile kitchen. Stocked easily prescribed food. It allowed large groups the agility to travel long distances. Profit opportunities for selling Texas cattle appeared after the Civil War. Cattle drives are popular. Chuckwagons were crucial for cattle drives. 


Christpher Lathem Sholes born in Pennsylvania in 1819. Tried to invent a typesetting machine. Desirel to easily print page numbers. Invented the modern typewriter in 1867. Typewriters inprint neat writing into paper. Later models reduced jamning. People can type faster than they write. Typewriters produce neat documents on demand. The 1867 prototype secured inventory. Their main investor had issues but funded it anyway. Sholay began incorporating other feathers from other modes. The 1878 model added lowercase letters.

History 5 Lesson 90


A British Comedian played a joke in 1810. The Postcard concept appeared in 1861 in the US. John P. Charlton patented the idea.Had help from Hymen Lipman inventor of pencil eraser. The postcard is simple and useful. People can send cheap messages. They provide a personal touch. Economical for average people in the early days of communications Lipman’s creativity helped sell the postcard. Spread to Englanf in 1870. The Eiffel Tower was a popular postcard picture. The US revoked rights of others to sell postcards in 1873 but revered in 1898. Golden age of postcards from 1907-1915. 

Gatling Gun 

Richard Gatling was born in North Carolina in 1818. He was a store owner, doctor and inventor. The Civil War provided his source of inspiration. Wanted to save lives by reducing soldiers needed on the battlefield. Invented Gatling Gun in 1861. It’s a raid-fire-multi-barrel gun. The hand crank rotated barrels to keep them cool. Firing sequence synchronized by cams. It had gravity-fed paper cartridges. Modern Gatling guns fire 4,000 rounds per minute. Galting had some setbacks initially.  Gatling demonstrated the gun to the army in live combat. Gradually increased rate of fire. Armies all over the world purchased these guns.


Fredrick Walton was born in England in 1834. He noticed that linseed oil dried into “runny” consistency. Walton experimented with drying the linseed oil faster than normal. Patented linoleum in 1863. Linoleum is a durable floor covering. Can be imprinted with decorative designs. Made out of lisseal oil combined with saw dust and cork. Walter had trouble generating sales initially. He had to develop marking to overcome his competition. Cheap imitators appeared by 1871. Walter expanded his market internationally. His name “Linoleum Became a generic trademark.

      Ratcheting Wrench

   The socket was not brand new in the 1800s. Ancient cultures used sockets to fasten tools together. First wrench patented in 1835. J.J. Richardson patented ratcheting wrench in 1863. The ratchet only allows motion in one direction. Socket heads plug into cylinders. It allows very quick tightening. It was easier to get into small spaces. It can quickly swap sires. Useful in making torque wrenches. Richardson patented his wrench through scientific American. It was then advertised in the magazine. This was a specialized highly targeted audience.

History 5 Lesson 85

Ironing board 

Heavy stones were used to smooth clothes. The Chinese  heated their irons. Fashions became more elaborate in the 1100s. They required hot ironing. People discovered the flat surfaces work best when ironing. They used the kitchen table. Then the ironing board was invented in 1858. Unwrinkled clothes make a good impression. Manual workers have wrinkled clothes. Ironing: Physical and chemical process. Padded-foam surface for absorbing heat. Designed sharp makers ironing different kinds of clothes convenient  The ironing board was improved. Mrs. Potts invented improved iron in 1871. The electric iron arrived in 1892. The ironing board sales benefited from the electric iron. 

Internal Combustion Engine

Erienne Lenoirwas born in Belgium in 1822. He became interested in electricity. Used the sparkes to invent the internal combustion engine in 1859. Uses small controlled explosions to drive pistons. Cams play an important role. Comes control valve tuning. Intake compression power exhaust. Comes control valve timing. The engine was used in small stationary applications. Nickola Otto invented the 4-stroke engine (Otto cycle). It was released in 1876. Ford was founded in 1901.

Lever-Action Repeating Rifle  

Benjamin Tyler Henry was born in New Hampshire in 1821. Worked for smith and Wesson. They developed the Hunt’s lever-action rifle concept. Henry went to work for Mr.Winchester. Invented the lever-action repeating rifle in 1860. Lever-action rear-loading cartridge rifle. Held 16 .44 caliber rounds. The lever controlled carriage flow. Could fire several shots rapidly at close range. Some were used in the Civil War, but Springfield dominated. Union soldiers used their own money to buy the Henry rifle. Winchester developed the Winchester rifle to avoid litigation with Henry. The rifle became famously known as “the gun that won the west”. 

Twist Drill  

Rotary tools have long been used to bore holes. Bow drill helps make fire. Steven A Morse invented the twist drill in 1861. Drill bits are cutting tools. It lifts and removes the debris as it turns. Bits are optimized for the material they cut. Wood bits and metal bits have different tips, the most common bit used today. Morse moved to Massachusetts Built a two-story factory in 1866. Produced twist bits for numerous industries. Sold them all over the world.