This collection of valuable nineteenth century patent
models, dating from 1842 to 1883, is the generous gift of Homer and Jean
Blair. We have provided a detailed bio of Homer O. Blair for your further review.
the revision of the U. S. Patent law in 1870, inventors seeking a patent
for a mechanical device were required to submit with their applications,
a model as well as drawings and written descriptions. Models are now required
only when the Patent Office feels that the applicant must prove the invention
Many models were destroyed in two disastrous fires in the Patent Office,
in 1836 and again in 1877, but thousands have survived. At least two items
in this collection were rescued from the ashes of the fire of 1877.