Q:

Who invented the elevator?

A:

Quick Answer

The first records of elevator use trace back to the third century B.C., and the original inventor is unknown. The earliest elevators were primitive and used human, animal or water-wheel power.

Know More
Who invented the elevator?
Credit: Mario Tama Getty Images News Getty Images

Full Answer

In the 19th century, elevators powered by steam became commonplace. In 1823, an "ascending room" powered by steam was built in London by two architects, Hormer and Burton. This was followed in 1835 by two architects named Frost and Stutt who built a primitive elevator that was powered by a combination of steam, counterweights and a belt system. In 1853, Elisha Otis invented and patented an elevator brake, which made elevators safer and paved the way for the development of the skyscraper.

Learn more about Inventions

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Who invented the iron plow?

    A:

    In ancient Chinese agriculture of the third century B.C., the iron plow was invented to make it easier to work the soil. These were called "kuan" or moldboard plows and were eventually pulled by oxen.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    When was the elevator invented?

    A:

    The modern elevator was invented by Elisha Graves Otis in 1852. He developed a safety device that would allow the rudimentary elevators of the day to be halted in place should the cables break.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the history of pulleys?

    A:

    The first records of pulley use date back to Mesopotamia, where people used rope pulleys for hoisting water as early as 1500 B.C. Plutarch mentions that Archimedes developed the first documented pulley system in the third century B.C.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What impact did the elevator have on society?

    A:

    The elevator impacted society by allowing cities to continue to grow because people could now build buildings taller. The hierarchy inside the buildings also changed. Before the elevator, the poorer tenants lived on the higher floors; after elevators were installed, richer tenants began to move into the higher floors.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore