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John Hadley

borndied
1682, Apr 161744, Feb 14
an English mathematician, and laid claim to the invention of the octant, two years after Thomas Godfrey claimed the same. Hadley also developed ways to make precision aspheric and parabolic objective mirrors for reflecting telescopes. In 1721 he showed the first parabolic Newtonian telescope to the Royal Society. This Newtonian, with a 6-inch-diameter (150 m...
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Cross-listed in Physicians

Hanaoka Seishu

borndied
1760, Oct 231835, Nov 21
a Japanese surgeon of the Edo period with a knowledge of Chinese herbal medicine, as well as Western surgical techniques he had learned through Rangaku (literally "Dutch learning", and by extension "Western learning"). Hanaoka is said to have been the first to perform surgery using general anesthesia.
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Waldo Hanchett

aka: Milton Waldo
borndied
1822, Jul 121904, Dec 28
Coming to Onondaga Valley at the age of two with his parents, he later settled in Syracuse. He associated with his father and brother John in the drug business and later practiced dentistry in the office of Dr. Amos Westcott. In 1848, Milton Waldo Hanchett patented a dental chair he built from scratch. He was engaged in the manufacture of dentifrice and was...
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Benjamin Hanks

borndied
1755, Oct 291824, Dec 15
generally accepted to be the first person to make bronze cannons and church bells in the United States. He was a goldsmith, instrument maker, clockmaker, bellfounder, and foundry owner. Hanks' first large church tower bell was mounted in The Old Dutch Church in New York City in 1780 when he was contracted to make the church tower clock. Hanks obtained a four...
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Cross-listed in WritersArchitects

Joseph Hansom

borndied
1803, Oct 261882, jun 29
a prolific English architect working principally in the Gothic Revival style. He invented the Hansom cab and founded the eminent architectural journal, The Builder, in 1843. He took a post as assistant to John Oates and there befriended Edward Welch, with whom he formed his first architectural partnership in 1828. On 23 December 1834 he registered the design...
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James Hargreaves

borndied
1720 ca1778, Apr 22
a weaver, carpenter and inventor in Lancashire, England. He was one of three inventors responsible for mechanizing spinning. Hargreaves is credited with inventing the spinning jenny in 1764, Richard Arkwright patented the water frame in 1769, and Samuel Crompton combined the two creating the spinning mule a little later.
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Cross-listed in Writers

John Harington

aka: Harrington
borndied
1560, Aug1612, Nov 20
an English courtier, author and translator popularly known as the inventor of the flush toilet. He became a prominent member of Queen Elizabeth I's court, and was known as her "saucy Godson". But because of his poetry and other writings, he fell in and out of favour with the Queen.
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Cross-listed in Physicians

William Snow Harris

borndied
1791, Apr 11867, Jan 22
an English physician and electrical researcher, nicknamed Thunder-and-Lightning Harris, and noted for his invention of a successful system of lightning conductors for ships. It took many years of campaigning, research and successful testing before the British Royal Navy changed to Harris's conductors from their previous less effective system. One of the succ...
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Lewis Haslett

bornactivedied
unknown1840sunknown
an inventor and the first person to receive a patent in the U.S. for an early form of the gas mask.
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Cross-listed in ComposersPerformers

Pantaleon Hebenstreit

borndied
1668, Nov 271750, May 15
a German dance teacher, musician and composer. Today his notability rests primarily on the pantalon, a keyboard instrument which he invented and which subsequently came to be seen by some as a precursor of the modern Pianoforte. Between 1698 and 1703 he was contracted by The Duke to work on the drama and music at the court of Weissenfels. In 1705 he traveled...
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Jozef Karol Hell

aka: József Károly
borndied
1713, MAy 151789, Mar 11
a Hungarian mining engineer and inventor, who invented the water-pillar (water pump machine) in 1749 (first use 1753). It is mainly used today for oil extraction. He also proposed construction of the tajchy reservoirs around Banská Štiavnica. He was a student of Samuel Mikovíny in 1737. Regardless of his nationality, he is a pride of both Hungarian and Sl...
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Cross-listed in PhysiciansScientists

Hermann von Helmholtz

borndied
1821, Aug 311894, Sep 8
a German physician and physicist who made significant contributions in several scientific fields. The largest German association of research institutions, the Helmholtz Association, is named after him. In physiology and psychology, he is known for his mathematics of the eye, theories of vision, ideas on the visual perception of space, color vision research,...
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Joseph Henry

borndied
1797, Dec 171878, May 13
an American scientist who served as the first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. He was the secretary for the National Institute for the Promotion of Science, a precursor of the Smithsonian Institution. He was highly regarded during his lifetime. While building electromagnets, Henry discovered the electromagnetic phenomenon of self-inductance. He also...
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Cross-listed in AstronomersScientists

John Herschel

bornactivedied
1792, Mar 71816-18671871, May 11
an English polymath, mathematician, astronomer, chemist, inventor, experimental photographer, and botanist. Herschel originated the use of the Julian day system in astronomy. He named seven moons of Saturn and four moons of Uranus. He also invented the photographic fixer hypo actinometer.
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Cross-listed in Educators

Rowland Hill

borndied
1795, Dec 31879, Aug 27
an English teacher, inventor and social reformer. He campaigned for a comprehensive reform of the postal system, based on the concept of Uniform Penny Post and his solution of prepayment, facilitating the safe, speedy and cheap transfer of letters. Hill later served as a government postal official, and he is usually credited with originating the basic concep...
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Cross-listed in Writers

Alfred Hobbs

borndied
1812, Oct 71891, Nov 6
an American locksmith. Hobbs went to London as a representative of the New York company of Day & Newell, which was exhibiting at the Great Exhibition of 1851. Hobbs had brought with him his boss's (Robert Newell) Parautoptic lock, designed to compete with, and surpass, the locks available at the time in Britain. He was the first one to pick Bramah's lock and...
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Cross-listed in Astronomers

Richard Hodgson

borndied
18041872, May 4
an English publisher and amateur astronomer. After a number of years of achieving considerable success in daguerrotypy, he worked on telescopic and microscopic observations. In 1852 he built an observatory at Claybury, in Essex, in which a 6-inch refractor was mounted equatorially. In 1854 he designed the diagonal eye-piece for observing the whole of the Su...
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Richard March Hoe

aka: Richard Marsh Hoe
borndied
1812, Sep 121886, Jun 7
an American inventor from New York City who designed a rotary printing press and related advancements, including the "Hoe web perfecting press" in 1871; it used a continuous roll of paper and revolutionized newspaper publishing. His father, with brothers-in-law Peter and Matthew Smith, established a steam-powered manufactory of printing presses in New York C...
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Cross-listed in Architects

Robert Hooke

borndied
1635, Jul 181703, Mar 3
an English natural philosopher, architect and polymath. His adult life comprised three distinct periods: as a scientific inquirer lacking money; achieving great wealth and standing through his reputation for hard work and scrupulous honesty following the great fire of 1666, but eventually becoming ill and party to jealous intellectual disputes. These issues ...
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Samuel Hopkins

bornactivedied
1743, Dec 91759-1810s1818
an American inventor from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On July 31, 1790, he was granted the first U.S. patent, under the new U.S. patent statute just signed into law by President Washington on April 10, 1790. Hopkins had petitioned for a patent on an improvement "in the making of Pot ash and Pearl ash by a new Apparatus and Process." The statute did not creat...
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Royal Earl House

borndied
1814, Sep 91895, Feb 25
the inventor of the first printing telegraph, which is now kept in the Smithsonian Institution. His nephew Henry Alonzo House is also a noted early American inventor. Royal Earl House spent his childhood in Vermont experimenting, designing, and building, a habit which would earn him distinction as an adult. He once caught a toad, skinned it, placed a set of ...
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Elias Howe Jr.

borndied
1819, Jul 91867, Oct 3
an American inventor and sewing machine pioneer. Contrary to popular belief, Howe was not the first to conceive of the idea of a sewing machine. Many other people had formulated the idea of such a machine before him, one as early as 1790, and some had even patented their designs and produced working machines, in one case at least 80 of them. However, Howe or...
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David Edward Hughes

borndied
1831, May 161900, Jan 22
a British-American inventor, practical experimenter, and professor of music known for his work on the printing telegraph and the microphone. He is generally considered to have been born in London but his family moved around that time so he may have been born in Corwen, Wales. His family moved to the U.S. while he was a child and he became a professor of musi...
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Walter Hunt

borndied
1796, Jul 291859, Jun 8
an American mechanic. He was born in Martinsburg, New York. Through the course of his work he became renowned for being a prolific inventor, notably of the lockstitch sewing machine (1833), safety pin (1849), a forerunner of the Winchester repeating rifle, a successful flax spinner, knife sharpener, streetcar bell, hard-coal-burning stove, artificial stone, ...
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Cross-listed in AstronomersScientists

Christiaan Huygens

bornactivedied
1629, Apr 141649-16931695, Jul 8
a prominent Dutch mathematician, scientist, astronomer, physicist, probabilist and horologist. His work included early telescopic studies of the rings of Saturn and the discovery of its moon Titan, the invention of the pendulum clock and other investigations in timekeeping.
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Cross-listed in ArtistsGovernanceWriters

Constantijn Huygens Jr.

aka: Lord of Zuilichem
borndied
16281697
a Dutch statesman and poet, mostly known for his work on scientific instruments (sometimes in conjunction with his younger brother Christiaan Huygens). But, he was also a chronicler of his times, revealing the importance of gossip. Besides he was an amateur draughtsman of landscapes. When William III of England became stadtholder in 1672 Constantijn Jr. had ...
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