Happy 209th Birthday President Lincoln

February 12 is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, which not that long ago warranted its own holiday.  Abraham Lincoln is the only president to earn a patent — U.S. Patent No. 6469 on Buoying Vessels of Shoals:

Lincoln was also the author of one of the pithier quotes about the patent system, : “added the fuel of interest to the fire of genius, in the discovery and production of new and useful things.”

However this was not Lincoln’s only brush with the patent system, and he has been celebrated in several patents that are worth dusting off on his 209th Birthday:

U.S. Patent No. D2983 protects this sculpture of Abraham Lincoln with General Grant and Secretary Stanton:

U.S. Patent No. 9403 protects an embroidery pattern featuring Lincoln:

U.S. Patent No. 22304 protects this spoon design featuring Lincoln’s home in Springfield, Illinois, and his tomb:

U.S. Patent No. D12634 protects the design of this drinking vessel, on which Lincoln shares the limelight with Garfield, the second president to be assassinated:

Independence Day Patents

Inventors are constantly working, and holidays are no exception.  In fact holidays seem to be a source of inspiration for many inventors, and Independence Day is no exception:

What says Independence Day better than the patriotic grill cover in U.S. Patent No. D49032?Perhaps the centennial medal of U.S. Patent No. D9103?Perhaps the centennial watch charm from U.S. Patent No. D7164:




Presidents Day Patents

Thomas Jefferson is the president most closely associated with the patents, although Abraham Lincoln is the only president to actually receive a patent. President’s day was established in 1885 in recognition of President George Washington, and it is still officially called “Washington’s Birthday” by the federal government. In 1971 it was moved from February 22, Washington’s actual birthday, to the third Monday in February as part of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which is when the popular name, “Presidents’ Day,” attached.  Although technically Washington’s Birthday, the day is also closely associated with Abraham Lincoln, whose birthday is also in February — February 12 — and is still celebrated in a number of U.S. states.

This post honors George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, both of whom have been frequently commemorated in the patents issued by the USPTO.

George Washington

U.S. Patent No. 537666

U.S. Patent No. D9161

U.S. Patent No. 21357

Although with some commemorations, it is hard to determine whether it is a positive or a negative tribute:

U.S. Patent No. D25387

Abraham Lincoln

U.S. Patent No. D2983 features President Lincoln

Of course, some commemorations are tackier than others:

U.S. Patent No. D12634

U.S. Patent No. D9403

U.S. Patent No. 1634713