In 1873, after a session of ice skating, 15-year-old Chester Greenwood invented earmuffs. His company, Champion Ear Protectors, provided steady work for the citizens of Farmington, Maine for over sixty years. The state celebrates December 21, the traditional first day of winter, as Chester Greenwood Day.
Greenwood's initial idea envisioned warm cotton balls held in a shaped wire. With the help of his grandmother, he used beaver fur and cloth to craft the first earmuffs. Later becoming a machinist and the owner of a bicycle shop, Greenwood also patented a wooden-spool-making machine, a steel-toothed rake, shock absorbers and a flat-bottomed tea kettle.