Sybilla Masters (c.1670-1720) got a patent for a method of crushing corn in 1715. It was issued in London to her husband as women could not get patents in their own names at that time.
Mary Kies (1752-1837) is the first woman in the U.S. to receive a patent in her own name (in 1809). The patent was for a device weaving straw with silk or thread.
Ellen Curtis Demorest (1824-1898) was the first person to create and distribute accurate patterns for home dressmaking. In 1876, she sold more than three million patterns in the U.S. and in Europe.
Josephine Cochran (1839-1913) invented the first practical dishwasher. She got the patent in 1886.
Helen Augusta Blanchard (1840-1922) has twenty-eight patents. She is best known for her sewing machine inventions, including the zigzagging sewing machine.
Sarah Goode (c.1850-1909) was the first African-American woman in the U.S. to receive a patent – for her folding cabinet bed, a hide-away.
Fannie Farmer (1857-1915) revolutionizes cooking with her Boston Cooking-School Cook Book which contains standardized measurements in recipes for the first time.
Among her many accomplishments, Kate Gleason (1865-1933) started a construction company that built affordable homes for the middle class. The RIT Kate Gleason College of Engineering is named for her.
An architect best known for buildings she designed at Grand Canyon National Park, Mary Colter (1869-1958) also created Mimbreno china.
Refrigeration expert *Mary Engle Pennington’s (1872-1952) patents for safe handling of fish, milk, poultry and eggs led to safer foods and saved thousands of lives.
Melitta Bentz (1873-1950), a German entrepreneur, invented the coffee filter in 1908.
One of the founders of the field of industrial engineering (and the mother of twelve children), *Lillian Moller Gilbreth (1878-1972) worked to make kitchens and homes more efficient.
Catherine Evans Whitener (1880-1964) masters candlewicking. The tufted quilts and bedspreads she makes lead to Evans Manufacturing Company. Today, 90% of machined carpet production is tufted.
Olive Dennis (1885-1957) changed railroad travel. She introduced seats that reclined, stain-resistant upholstery, dimmable ceiling lights, and individual window vents, among other innovations.
Called the “Lady Edison” by the press and at the patent office, Beulah Henry (1887-1973) received her first patent (of 49), for an ice cream freezer, in 1912.
A woman of many talents including chef, educator, author and business owner, Ruth Wakefield (1903-1977) is remembered for inventing the Toll House chocolate chip cookie named for the Inn she owned.
Co-owner of Mattel Toys, Inc., Ruth Handler (1916-2002) introduced the Barbie doll in 1959 along with clothing and accessories. Over one billion Barbie’s have been sold to date.
An early Peace Corps volunteer, Ann Moore (1934- ) invented and patented the Snugli baby carrier. She also has patents for a backpack carrier for portable oxygen dispensers (the Air Lift).
Jill S. Tietjen, P.E., co-author, Her Story: A Timeline of the Women Who Changed America, www.herstoryatimeline.com
* Indicates an Inductee into the National Women's Hall of Fame