December 22nd 2014
Mark Twain nailed the description of a Connecticut Yankee innovator.
The year was 1889, less than a decade after Twain handed in perhaps the first book manuscript written on a typewriter. Hartford was, in the words of historian William Hosley, “The Silicon Valley of the 19th Century,” with the great factories, forges and machine-makers of the age, among them the Colt Armory supplying the West and the world with newer, faster guns.
Two former Colt mechanics named Francis Pratt and Amos Whitney had done nothing short of defining the inch down to the nearest few millionths — and in so doing invented precision manufacturing. Bicycle-maker Albert Pope, on whose contraption Twain loved to tool around town, would become the most important car manufacturer in the nation within a dozen years….Read more.