Skip Main Navigation Skip To Navigation Content

Multimedia Gallery

You are here: Census.govNewsroomMultimedia GalleryAudioProfile America › First Patent
Skip top of page navigation

First Patent

July 31, 2014

You may Listen or download this story in .mp3 format or as a .wav file.

Profile America — Thursday, July 31st. The first patent in the young United States was issued on this date in 1790 to Samuel Hopkins of Vermont for a new method of making potash -- useful in producing soap, fertilizer and glass. The Constitution recognized, for the first time in history, the intrinsic right of an inventor to profit from his invention. Hopkins' application was initially reviewed by Thomas Jefferson and approved by President Washington. By 1802, the U.S. Patent Office was established to process applications. Annually, more than 244,000 patents are granted. Individuals receive 6 percent of patents -- the remainder are granted to U.S. and foreign corporations, with slightly more granted to foreign companies. Agricultural chemical manufacturing is a $32 billion a year industry in the U.S. Profile America is in its17th year as a Public Service of the U.S. Census Bureau.

Sources: http://inventors.about.com/od/historypatentlaw/a/history.htm

www.uspto.gov/news/pr/2001/01-33jsp

http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/uspatent.htm

http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/cats/business_enterprise/patents_trademarks_copyrights.html t. 778

http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ASM_2010_31AS101&prodType=table NAICS 32531


Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | Last Revised: June 27, 2014