Life Of The American Born British Inventor Hiram S. Maxim
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The Life of Sir Hiram S. Maxim
Southeastern Oklahoma State University Abstract
The objective of this research paper is to document the life of American-born British inventor Hiram S. Maxim. The topics include an introduction into his early life, his many job experiences, his inventions and the ensuing success. His success then allowed him to follow his interests in aviation. The method of research is primarily from biographies, encyclopedias, published articles, and various internet resources. Much of the history documented about him deals with the invention of the Maxim machine gun. Although this invention was undoubtedly his biggest success, it is only a fraction of how he became an import figure in the field of science…show more content… His employer Daniel Sweat owned a mill that had become infested with mice. This inspired him to begin working on an automatic mousetrap. He perfected the invention and in doing so got rid of the rodent problem that was plaguing his employer’s mill. Many consider this to be his first notable invention, although he did seek out a patent for it.
His other professions included an instrument maker and a mechanical draftsman. He worked for his uncle, Levi Stephens, at an engineering firm in Massachusetts. While in Boston he worked at a scientific instrument shop and later went on the work at a shipbuilding firm in New York. These various experiences gave him the skill to create more inventions.
In 1866, at the age of 26, he received his first official patent for a curling iron. He also invented a coating for blackboards that was so successful that large numbers of his specially coated blackboards were sold throughout North American (Dartford Technology). These inventions were followed by a machine that would produce illumination gas and a locomotive head lamp.
These inventions combine with wealth of experience at a seemingly early age got the attention of Spencer D. Schuyler, founder of the United States Electrical Lighting Company. In 1878 he was appointed chief engineer of the first electric lighting company in the U.S. It was there he began working on various electrical devices and solidified his importance in the field of science and technology.