Monopoly | Collect $200 salary as you pass go! In 1904, Elizabeth Magie created a board game to demonstrate the impact of land grabbing and corruption in capitalism where oligarchs grow richer on the backs of tenants. She named it: The Landlords' Game, but you would know it as today's Monopoly. Ironically, 30 years later Charles Darrow, a home heater salesman, ripped off her game. Darrow got credit for re-packaging the game as Monopoly and he sold the idea to Parker Brothers. Magie was reportedly tracked down after the game was sold and she was paid $500 for her creation.
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The Electric Refrigerator | Florence Parpart was awarded the patent for the modern electric refrigerator in 1914. Little is known about her life. She was listed as a housewife in the U.S. Census and her husband may have helped build the prototype for Parpart’s new refrigerator. But it was said to be her idea to eliminate the use of the icebox by utilizing electric energy. Before inventing the modern day refrigerator, Parpart received a patent for improving the street-cleaning machine, which was sold to cities throughout America.
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Car Heater | In 1893, Margaret Wilcox invented something that would surely please women throughout America: the car heater! Heat would now travel from the engine of a vehicle to the front interior of a car. Improvements were made to her design, but still today Wilcox is credited for making a crucial element of an automobile, ensuring more comfort in the driving experience.
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The Life Raft | In 1882, Maria Beasely created a mechanism so that people stopped dying at sea. In 1884, she presented several of her inventions in the Cotton Centennial Exposition in New Orleans, including the lifesaving raft. Like many early female inventors, little is known about her personal life but she was said to run the Beasley Standard Barrel Manufacturing Company listed in the Philadelphia Business Directory in 1885.
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Ice Cream Maker | In 1843, Nancy M. Johnson applied for a patent for a hand-cranked ice cream freezer, which made the experience of churning an ice cream mix much easier than ever before. Johnson's invention enabled companies like White Mountain to create further improvements to the ice cream machine, though her invention is still used today.
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Anna Connelly first submitted her patent for a fire escape in 1887 with the design to have metal bridges between buildings, allowing residents a safe escape if there was a fire. Today, they line the side of buildings-- but fire safety would not have become regulation as simply if not for Connelly.
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In 1983, Flossie Wong-Staal was the first person, with her team, to discover HIV causes AIDS. She worked to clone and genetically map the virus and with research developed a "molecular knife" which worked to repress HIV in stem cells and was a mrjor breakthrough leading to HIV tests we use today.
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Stephanie Kwolek invented Kelvar, a strong, stiff sunthetic fber in 1965 that is now used in bulletproof helmets, gloves, vests because of it's resilence.
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