1952 – Keith the Inventor gets a patent in 1956

Keith was an inventor and a tinkerer.  He was also very fond of aluminum and rivets. I know this because I used to help him “buck rivets” out on his creations. He liked to fire up the table saw in our basement and run aluminum sheets through it, usually at a very early time of day.  It was loud and would drive us all crazy. This love of metal came out of his repairing airplane bodies.

The Nash in the photo below was brown with beige tones, and really nice inside. He didn’t have it for very long.  You can see the trailer is very crude because he made it.

A Nash and his trailer

A Nash and his trailer

I don’t know if this is the trailer above or if he made another to use or he borrowed it?

Another version of his trailer

Another version of his trailer

Among his many creations were his boat, trailer(s), different versions of camping trailers, a sort of car and trailer combo, and his oar design. I will post about some of his other creations in future posts. Yes, he gave them all names.

He loved to fish and so he designed an oar to rest the fishing pole on. It was attached to the side of the boat so it could be moved around as you liked. I would go out with him and his brother, Gordon, in the boat and fish somewhere nearby. They would say very little, maybe one or two words and a grunt here and there, but it would mostly be in silence.  Now if you look closely you will see another car in the background…not sure what that one was?

Brother Gordon on the left and Keith with his big fish....

Brother Gordon on the left and Keith with his big fish….Look how confident he looks!

Keith's Oar Design

Keith’s Oar Design, apparently you needed to sit back to enjoy using the oar mechanism.

Boat Oar Display

Boat Oar Display

This oar design resulted in a patent being issued.

Keith with his oar samples off to the patent office.

Keith with his oar samples off to the patent office maybe?

Back then, in the 1950’s, business was conducted by telephone, if you wanted to be extravagant, or by letter. So this whole process to get a patent took from 1952 to 1956.

Keith paid Smith & Tuck $45.00 on March 29, 1952. Smith & Tuck were Attorneys and Counselors in Patent and Trade Mark Causes.  Maybe the photo above was his visit to their offices in Seattle at the 734 Central Building which I cannot find at this time on maps of downtown Seattle, of course, streets might be different now and the building is still there.

It took them to January 25, 1956 to finally secure a patent for Keith and it was #2,731,224 entitled FISHING POLE SUPPORT and POSITIONING DEVICE. The grant was for a period of seventeen years from 1956. It has since expired an is available to all to see.

1956 Smith & Tuck letter explaining the Patent issued

1956 Smith & Tuck letter explaining the Patent issued

Keith's patent page 1

Keith’s patent page 1

Keith's patent page 2

Keith’s patent page 2

Here is his patent referenced online:  http://www.google.ca/patents/US2731224 all seven pages of it.

What I can remember, of my first attempt to find it online, is people have been accessing it and liking the mechanism at the bottom of page 1.  I think he would be proud to see this.

If you have someone who has a patent and you don’t have all the official paperwork, just put the patent number into Google and you will get results or the title with the name of the person.  Good luck!

In 1956 the National Service Bureau in St. Louis inquired about his pole design. They wanted to know if it was for outright sale or on a royalty basis.

In May of 1956 Penn Fishing Tackle Mfg. turned him down. The Fisherman replied about advertising questions he must have asked in November of 1956. Associated Manufacturers Reps in Los Angeles replied in March of 1957 telling him the manufacture of his design would received a A-plus rating at a responsible plant and they would want 10% of the royalties and something about sale or assignment being completed? The manufacturer would pay engineering costs and Keith would pay a commission.  Apparently the two companies mentioned may still be around?


Somehow I think there was more going on but this was all I found in his papers. He was not too happy about the outcome. His board of designs of his fishing pole project are still hanging on the ceiling in the basement of the house. I am proud of my Dad, this was not an easy thing to do and he was not really an outgoing person.

About BJ MacDonald

Interested in travel, really into genealogy and researching my family history, classic novels and movies, fantasy and science fiction, photography, history and more... Here is a tip. Make sure you are commenting on the blog you were visiting and the post you were interested in. My blogs are listed by hovering over my pictures and clicking. Clicking one of them will take you back to the correct blog. You can try me here: bjmcdonell@gmail.com
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6 Responses to 1952 – Keith the Inventor gets a patent in 1956

  1. The Central Building is at 810 Third Avenue in downtown Seattle, between Marion & Columbia Streets. I am sure that the “734” was the office suite number of the attorneys. Probably if you look under their name in the old city directories that will be it. Looking under “Central Building” might yield a list of all of the offices. Maybe you should check on those patents, too, maybe you can inherit them and become rich!


    • BJ MacDonald says:

      Yeah, I was seeing that address pop up on Google. Makes sense that the 734 was the suite number. Well won’t that be nice but I think his patent is a little outdated now. Sigh! Wedgewood will be briefly mentioned in about 1 to 2 more posts. Thanks for keeping an eye on me. I do check you out on occasion and see what you are up to. Thanks for the tip

      Liked by 1 person

      • Let me know if I can check anything for you, I forgot that you are not in Seattle? I often go to use the old directories at the downtown library and the resources of the Seattle Room.


      • BJ MacDonald says:

        Yes, I have been to the Seattle Public and know John LaMont the librarian. It is a great city directory collection. I think I am good, but I will remember. Say do you know anything about Wedgewood and the R.H. Thomson Freeway back in the 1960’s. My Dad stopped it with many others of course. One of my posts. Bonnie

        Liked by 1 person

      • You are braver than me! I have avoided writing about the 520 because I think others have done it better, including you. http://520history.org/


      • BJ MacDonald says:

        Yes, I have been to their website, very good. Well when I publish you will see what I am talking about. I will not try to explain the whole mess of the disappearing off ramps of the R.H. Thomson Freeway just what my Dad did about it. Keep in touch Bonnie

        Liked by 1 person

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