Thursday, November 04, 2004

Today in History: 1846

Artificial leg:
In 1846, the first U.S. patent for an artificial leg was granted to Benjamin F. Palmer of Meredith, New Hampshire (No. 4,834). The leg had a pliable joint that worked noiselessly and preserved its contour in all positions. It presented no openings in the exterior of the legs about the joints and contained tendons of gut and springs arranged in such a manner as to give more elasticity, stength, durability and freedom of motion than previously available. Artificial legs had been used previously: in 1837 one was exhibited by Howland & Co of Brookfield, Mass., at the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association.

11 months ago today: I had a surgery that made me thankful that Benjamin Palmer started what he did!
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