General Knowledge - Inventions - Discussion

Discussion :: Inventions - Section 1 (Q.No.21)


Who was the first American female to patent her invention, a method of weaving straw with silk?

[A]. Marjorie Joyner
[B]. Margaret Knight
[C]. Amanda Jones
[D]. Mary Kies

Answer: Option D


Mary was not the first American woman inventor to be sure, there were many female inventors before her, but they never bothered to get a patent.

Sweeti said: (Mar 14, 2011)  
Who was the first Amrican female to patent her invention, a method of weaving straw with silk?

Anil Kumar Patel said: (Apr 27, 2018)  
1809 Mary Kies receives the first United States patent granted to a woman. Her method of weaving straw with silk or thread gives a boost to the young nation's hat industry.

The United States passed its first patent law in 1790, but few women applied to patent their inventions. One reason was that many states had laws that didn't allow women to own property in their own right if they were married.

New Englander Betsy Metcalf, for instance, had invented a method of braiding straw in 1798. She employed a lot of other women to make hats with the new process but never bothered to get a patent.

Mary Dixon Kies had other ideas. She was a Connecticut native and black, and she recognized a market opportunity when she saw one. Many women of the era worked long hours in their fields and gardens, and they needed inexpensive work bonnets to shield themselves from sunshine and rain alike. Kies' patent described the invention as "a new and useful improvement in weaving straw with silk or thread. ".

As it turned out, women who liked wearing fancy French bonnets or the latest London millinery also needed a new source for hats. Because of the Napoleonic Wars, the United States had embargoed all trade with France and Britain. 1810 was a heady year for the New England hat industry, with $500,000 ($9 million in today's money) worth of sales just for straw bonnets made in Massachusetts.

First lady Dolley Madison, who knew a thing or two about fashion, praised Kies for her contribution to the industry and foreign policy.

A huge fire in 1836 destroyed the records of the Patent Office, but only about 20 of the nearly 10,000 patents up to that time had been granted to women. Most of them involved the everyday life and work of women: clothing, household implements, fireplaces and cookstoves.

Jizia said: (May 26, 2018)  

Jizia said: (May 26, 2018)  
How that a straw is also weaved with silk? Please give more details.

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