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Richard Jordan Gatling, American
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Richard Jordan Gatling (September 12, 1818 - February 26, 1903) was an American inventor. While being most known for inventing the Gatling Gun, Gatling invented and patented a number of other inventions. His inventions include a screw propeller and a wheat drill (a planting device) in 1839, a hemp break machine in 1850, a steam plow (steam tractor) in 1857, the Gatling Gun in 1861, a marine steam ram in 1862, and a motor driven plow (tractor). Gatling invented the Gatling gun after he noticed that a majority of the soldiers fighting in the Civil War were lost to disease rather than gunshots. The gun was based on Gatling's seed planter. A working prototype was developed in 1861. Though the gun was developed during the Civil War, it saw very little action. In 1870 he sold his patents for the Gatling gun to Colt. Gatling remained president of the Gatling Gun Company until it was fully absorbed by Colt in 1897. He died in 1903 at the age of 84.
June 2nd, 2013
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