Mark Twain’s three Patents
Mark Twain is best remembered for his award-winning novels and short stories. But did you know that the iconic author was also an inventor? In fact, Mark Twain held three patents! His patents were issued under his real name Samuel L. Clemens. “L” stood for Langhorne.
Patent No. 121,992 was issued on December 19, 1871, titled Improvement in Adjustable and Detachable Straps for Garments. Unfortunately, this device never went into production.
Unperturbed, two years later on June 24, 1873, he was issued Patent No. 140,245, an adjustable self-pasting scrapbook. This invention enabled people to paste items into a scrapbook without having to use water or glue.
According to a June 1885 article from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Twain made $50,000 from his Scrapbook invention.
Twain invented a history game, identified as Game Apparatus, for which he received a patent. Patent No. 324,535 was granted on August 18, 1885, and the game was called Memory Builder.
Twain had proven that authors can be inventors too. As Einstein famously said: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”