Our compendium of 25 of the most crazy-creative, thinking-outside-the-box inventions in American history
An insight at a county fair in 1873 transformed the West
Mechanized picking of cotton transformed the South
The gas plasma panel offered a brighter display with no flicker and higher contrast, but took 30 years to perfect
A new approach to impressing sound on radio waves created less static
Stephanie Kwolek invented one of the world’s most versatile materials, and a new branch of polymer chemistry
A poor immigrant scrounged materials from junkyards to invent a device that worked five times faster than lasting by hand, making shoes affordable for millions
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