Greatest Inventions By Women

Disposable Diaper, Syringe: Here Are 9 Things You Didn’t Know Were Invented By Women

Greatest Inventions By Women
Greatest Inventions By Women

Isn’t it ironic that some of the world’s greatest inventions, many of which are still used today, were invented by women?

In honour of International Women’s Month, we highlight notable inventions you probably didn’t know were invented by women.

From the disposable diaper to the dishwasher, here are nine of them.

1. Mary Anderson (Windshield Wiper)

Mary Anderson was a famous inventor known for inventing the windshield wiper.

Her idea came to light while she was on a visit to New York in 1902, as she identified a problem and its possible solution. She noticed her driver was struggling to see through his windows as he had to constantly lean out of his vehicle or stop the car to wipe the windscreen with his hands.

Upon her return to Alabama, she hired a designer for a hand-operated device and had a local company produce a working model.

On November 10, 1903, she was granted a 17-year patent for an automatic car window cleaning device controlled from inside the car, widely known as the windshield wiper.

2. Ruth Wakefield (Chocolate Cookie Chip)

Known as the inventor of the chocolate cookie chip recipe, Ruth Wakefield was an American chef whose invention was born in 1938.

History of the Chocolate Chip Cookie In 1930, Ruth Graves Wakefield invented the chocolate chip cookie… | Homemade cookies, Inventions, Chocolate chip cookies

She ran out of baking chocolate while baking and decided to use a Nestle chocolate bar instead. The chocolate chunks, which are the cookie’s major ingredient, however, remained chunky instead of melting, resulting in an invention that everyone will like.

3. Josephine Cochrane (Dishwasher)

Born Josephine Cochrane, she invented the first successful hand washer. She founded her manufacturing company after her patent was issued in 1886. She then began to market the machine to restaurants and hotels.

4. Marie Van Brittan Brown (Home Security System)

A nurse, Marie Van Brittan Brown conceived the idea of a home security system due to the high crime rate in her neighborhood.

Along with her husband, who was an electrician, the video home security system was invented in 1966. They applied for a patent that same year, which was granted in 1969.

5. Jeanne Villepreux-Power (Aquarium)

Fondly called the “Mother of Aquariophily, Jeanne Villepreux Power, a marine biologist, was passionate about aquaculture and conservation.

She invented the first glass aquarium in 1832 and was the first person to create an aquarium for experimenting with aquatic organisms.

6. Marion Donovan (Disposable Diaper)

While there had been several attempts in the 1930s to invent a disposable diaper, Marion Donovan is known for changing the game in 1946 by creating a waterproof covering for cloth diapers using plastic from a shower curtain.

To make it more absorbent and disposable, she added a paper liner to her design.

Donovan patented her design ‘Boaters’ in 1951. Her innovation eventually led to the creation of disposable diapers, commercialized in the U.S. by Victor Mills, the creator of Pampers.

7. Grace Hopper (Computer Program)

 Greatest Inventions By Women

Grace Hopper, a mathematician, scientist, and United States Navy rear admiral was a pioneer of computer programming and languages.

Hopper is famous for inventing the theory of machine-independent programming languages and COBOL (Common Business Oriented Language) a high-level programming language still in use today. It was also the first “user-friendly” computer software for businesses.

8. Margaret Knight (Paper Bag)

 Greatest Inventions By Women

Margaret Knight is known as the inventor of the machine that produces flat-bottomed paper bags for groceries.

While working at the Columbia Paper Bag Company, Margaret Knight noticed that envelope-shaped paper bags were unsuitable for bulky items.

This led her to invent a machine in 1868. When a fellow machinist, Charles Annan attempted to steal her idea, Knight sued him, receiving her patent in 1971.

9. Letitia Geer (One-Hand Syringe)

 Greatest Inventions By Women

Letitia Geer is a nurse who invented the one-hand medical syringe. At the time, medical syringes that required both hands were mostly used.

Geer thought the syringes, which at the time required both hands, were difficult to use as they were mostly unsanitary, influencing her idea. She got her patent in 1899.

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