In 1917 John Van Valkenburg, a Salt Lake City inventor, announced that he had conquered the laws of gravity and had an aircraft that could fly from Salt Lake City to the Pacific Coast and back in a night. It was reported that he had taken it to Washington and then turned it over to the US government for use in the War effort. Then, suddenly, Van Valkenburg found himself on trial.
Ending War with Ionic Vibration and a Vacuum Cleaner Dr. Orville W. Owen who “proved” that Bacon wrote Shakespeare and an unknown night watchman from Wisconsin take a crack at ending the First World War.
Inventive Deaths: How to Die in a Better Mousetrap Inventors often seem a hapless lot. If they aren’t being blown up by their own patented explosive shells, they hang themselves from their own perpetual motion machines or are found wandering the streets of great cities, hopelessly insane when their creations fail to make them rich….A look at obscure inventors—mostly Americans–who died at the hands of their better mousetraps.