America may have a relatively short history compared with the UK and other countries, but a whole host of vitally important inventions and innovations have come out of the US in that time. Here is a roundup of some of the most crucial.
Probably one of the most famous American inventions, the light bulb is the defining legacy of Thomas Edison who also brought us a number of other brilliant innovations. It was actually dreamt up by several before him, and was the end result of decades of experiments. Obviously the impact of this invention was massive and we still use products that very much resemble the original design Edison created.
This is another invention that is technically American, since Alexander Graham Bell was experimenting in Boston at the time and not his home country of Scotland. He filed his patent just hours before Elisa Gray who came up with the same concept simultaneously.
Gin is short for engine in this case, a machine patented by Eli Whitney in 1794. It revolutionised the cotton industry, making it widely profitable for the first time by automating the process of making useful cotton from seeds grown on plantations. There was an unfortunate side effect of this because the need for bigger plantations led to a greater number of black slaves being deployed.
Ford Model T
The first commercially available motor car was famously the Model T developed by Henry Ford in Detroit. Until this breakthrough automobiles were rare and reserved for the ridiculously wealthy, but Ford designed a family friendly and affordable version that led to the industry as we know it today.
There are so many great inventions to come from the US that we’ll be completing our list in another instalment!