Inventor, salesman, and engineer who invented the first version of the zipper in the late Nineteenth Century. He was also one of the early thinkers regarding the invention of railway systems in urban areas.
He served in the Union Army during the American Civil War and also attended Knox College in his Illinois hometown.
His earliest inventions were related to street rail systems.
He and his wife, Annie, were married in 1874 and had three children: Jane, Gertrude, and Ross.
His zipper invention was later refined by fellow inventor and engineer, Gideon Sundback.