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Everything was an original at some time

The unlikely story of the Revolutionary War era submarine



For those of us with careers in the world of intellectual property, you never know where you’ll stumble across an interesting new perspective or an origins story, but, of course, they’re always welcome.


Earlier this week, I saw that the American Battlefield Trust, an organization of which I have been a member for more than 20 years and regularly support, had posted a piece on one of the world’s most unusual inventions, the one-man submarine known as “Bushnell’s Turtle.”



It’s hard to talk about the Revolutionary War without invoking the term “bold,” as rising against a global colonial power is not for the faint of heart. Innovation in warfare, especially in the medicinal, scientific, and engineering fields, was — and remains — a natural occurrence. But with George Washington’s Continental Army out armed, outmanned, and outmatched by the British at almost every angle, the Continental Congress did more than fund a guerilla war, it welcomed non-conventional tactics and odd inventions. This bold mindset allowed one inventor’s ideas to flourish and change the game of naval warfare forever. This is the story of the Turtle, the first combat-deployed submersible vessel.


For the rest of the story, check it out here.


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