Display of inductees in the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Alexandria
|Purpose||"Honor[ing] the women and men responsible for the great technological advances that make human, social and economic progress possible."|
|Headquarters||3701 Highland Park N.W.|
North Canton, Ohio 44720
|Affiliations||Invent Now America|
The National Inventors Hall of Fame (NIHF) is an American not-for-profit organization which recognizes individual engineers and inventors who hold a U.S. patent of highly significant technology. Founded in 1973, its primary mission is to "honor the people responsible for the great technological advances that make human, social and economic progress possible." Besides the Hall of Fame, it also operates a museum in Alexandria, Virginia, and a former middle school in Akron, Ohio, and sponsors educational programs, a collegiate competition, and special projects all over the United States to encourage creativity among students.
As of 2020, 603 inventors have been inducted, mostly constituting historic persons from the past three centuries, but including about 100 living inductees.An NIHF committee chooses an annual inductee class in February from nominations accepted from all sources. Nominees must hold a U.S. patent of significant contribution to the U.S. welfare, and which advances science and useful arts. The 2020 class included 22 inventors.
The National Inventors Hall of Fame was founded in 1973 on the initiative of H. Hume Mathews, then the chairman of the National Council of Patent Law Associations (now the National Council of Intellectual Property Law Associations).In the following year, it gained a major sponsor in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office from Washington, D.C.
At first, the Hall was housed in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, D.C., near the Washington National Airport but it soon needed more room at a more prominent location. A committee was formed in 1986 to find a new home for it. For a time, the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was the frontrunner. But in 1987, a patent attorney from Akron, Edwin "Ned" Oldham, the representative from the National Council of Patent Law Associations, led the drive to move the Hall to Akron. According to Maurice H. Klitzman, one of the founding members of the Board of Directors, because of the guaranteed financial support by the city of Akron that greatly exceeded any other community's proposal, the Board selected Akron as the new home. The construction of the new building was finished in 1995 and the Hall opened to the public with the name of the Inventure Place.
From the beginning, the Inventure Place was intended to be more than a science and technology museum and library. It was designed to double as an inventor's workshop and a national resource center for creativity. Designed by an architect from New York City, James Stewart Polshek, it was a stainless-steel building, shaped like a curving row of white sails, with five tiers of exhibits. One of the exhibits allowed the visitors to use computer programs for making animations and mechanisms for running laser-light shows.
But attendance did not meet the expectations and the museum never made a profit, although its related ventures and programs, such as Invent Now and Camp Invention, proved to be more successful. In 2002, its name was changed to the National Inventors Hall of Fame Museum. Six years later the Hall moved to Alexandria. Its former facility was converted to a specialty school for students in grades between 5th and 8th. It is now the National Inventors Hall of Fame STEM Middle School, a middle school for the Akron Public Schools.
In Alexandria, the National Inventors Hall of Fame operates a museum in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office building at 600 Dulany Street, with a gallery of digital portraits of the honorees, interactive kiosks and a theater.Admission is free.
In addition to the exhibits of the artifacts and documents from the collections of the Patent and Trademark Office, it also promotes future generations of inventors by sponsoring the Invent Now Kids program, Camp Invention, Club Invention and the Collegiate Inventors Competition as well as, with national partners, many ventures and special projects.
Camp Invention, founded in 1990, is a daytime summer camp for children, with program sites in 49 states.Camp Invention is the only nationally recognized summer program focused on creativity, innovation, real-world problem solving and the spirit of the invention.
The Collegiate Inventors Competition was created in 1990 to encourage college and university students to be creative and innovative with science, engineering and technology for dealing with the problems of the world. Since then, with the help from the sponsors, it has awarded more than $1 million to the winning students in two categories, undergraduate and graduate. In 2012, the first places were won with a delivery therapy for treating cancer and a way to facilitate suturing in abdominal surgery. Other finalists included the use of CT scanning and 3-D printing technology to replicate an amputee's lost hand, a low-profile shoulder brace that can be applied by the athletes themselves, and an electric motorcycle that runs on spheres instead of wheels.
An invention is a unique or novel device, method, composition or process. The invention process is a process within an overall engineering and product development process. It may be an improvement upon a machine or product or a new process for creating an object or a result. An invention that achieves a completely unique function or result may be a radical breakthrough. Such works are novel and not obvious to others skilled in the same field. An inventor may be taking a big step toward success or failure.
John Adam Presper "Pres" Eckert Jr. was an American electrical engineer and computer pioneer. With John Mauchly, he designed the first general-purpose electronic digital computer (ENIAC), presented the first course in computing topics, founded the Eckert–Mauchly Computer Corporation, and designed the first commercial computer in the U.S., the UNIVAC, which incorporated Eckert's invention of the mercury delay line memory.
Elijah J. McCoy was a Canadian-born inventor and engineer of African American descent who was notable for his 57 U.S. patents, most having to do with the lubrication of steam engines. Born free in Canada, he came to the United States as a young child when his family returned in 1847, becoming a U.S. resident and citizen.
Lester Allan Pelton was an American inventor who contributed significantly to the development of hydroelectricity and hydropower in the American Old West as well as world-wide. In the late 1870s, he invented the Pelton water wheel, at that time the most efficient design of the impulse water turbine. Recognized as one of the fathers of hydroelectric power, he was awarded the Elliott Cresson Medal during his lifetime and is an inductee of the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Dr. Erna Schneider Hoover is an American mathematician notable for inventing a computerized telephone switching method which "revolutionized modern communication" according to several reports. It prevented system overloads by monitoring call center traffic and prioritizing tasks on phone switching systems to enable more robust service during peak calling times. At Bell Laboratories where she worked for over 32 years, Hoover was described as an important pioneer for women in the field of computer technology.
George Charles Devol Jr. was an American inventor known for developing Unimate, the first material handling robot employed in industrial production work.
The Akron Beacon Journal is a morning newspaper in Akron, Ohio, United States. Owned by Gannett, it is the sole daily newspaper in Akron and is distributed throughout Northeast Ohio. The paper's coverage focuses on local news. The Beacon Journal has won four Pulitzer Prizes: in 1968, 1971, 1987 and 1994.
Mary Elizabeth Anderson was an American real estate developer, rancher, viticulturist and inventor of the windshield wiper blade. On November 10, 1903 Anderson was granted her first patent for an automatic car window cleaning device controlled from inside the car, called the windshield wiper.
Patsy O’Connell Sherman was an American chemist and co-inventor of Scotchgard, a 3M brand of products, a stain repellent and durable water repellent.
George H. Sweigert (1920–1999) is credited as the first inventor to patent the cordless telephone.
Akron Public Schools is a school district serving students in Akron, Ohio, United States, and nearby communities. It is located in the northeastern part of Ohio, less than 40 mi (64 km) south of Cleveland and 20 mi (32 km) north of Canton. The district encompass 54.4 sq mi (141 km2). The district includes, as of the 2017-2018 school year, 9 high schools, 8 middle schools, 29 elementary schools, and 5 administration buildings. Approximately 21,343 students are enrolled. The district employs 2804 full-time and 1618 part-time employees. The district's annual budget exceeds $559 million.
Roger Lee Easton, Sr. was an American scientist/physicist who was the principal inventor and designer of the Global Positioning System, along with Ivan A. Getting and Bradford Parkinson. He was born in Craftsbury, Vermont.
Invent Now America is an annual event hosted by the National Inventors Hall of Fame in conjunction with the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO), Time Magazine and The History Channel. Each year, thousands of inventors submit their inventions for inclusion in the event.
Franklin Augustus “Frank” Seiberling, also known as F.A. Seiberling, was an American inventor and founder. He is most famous for co-founding the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company in 1898 and the Seiberling Rubber Company in 1921. He also built Stan Hywet Hall, a Tudor Revival mansion, now a National Historic Landmark and historic house museum in Akron, Ohio.
Renee Powell is an American professional golfer who played on the US-based LPGA Tour and is currently head professional at her family's Clearview Golf Club in East Canton, Ohio. She was the second African-American woman ever to play on the LPGA Tour.
The Lemelson Foundation is a private 501(c)(3) philanthropy founded in 1993 by Jerome H. Lemelson and his wife Dorothy.
Leroy (Lee) P. Kemp, Jr. is an American amateur wrestler who achieved unparalleled success at the high school, collegiate, and international levels.
Bantval Jayant Baliga is an Indian electrical engineer best known for his work in power semiconductor devices, and particularly the invention of the insulated gate bipolar transistor (IGBT).
Paul R. Sanberg is an American scientist and inventor. His early work focused on the causes of brain cell death. His recent research has been on methods of repairing damaged brain tissue, and, in tandem with other scientists, demonstrating that stem cells derived from the blood of bone marrow and umbilical cords can be converted to neural cells.
Sheldon Ocker is an American sportswriter.
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