Born May 2 1844 - Died Oct 10 1929
Improvement in Lubricators for Steam-Engines
Automatic Engine Lubricator
Patent Number(s) 129,843
Elijah McCoy received his first patent for an automatic lubricating device in 1872.
Previously, engines had to be stopped before necessary lubrication could be applied. McCoy's invention allowed engines to be lubricated while they ran, saving precious time and money.
McCoy continued to create improvements on his device, and soon, long distance locomotives, transatlantic ships, and factory machines were using his lubricating invention. His reputation spread, and users of heavy equipment were wary of buying cheap substitutes. As legend goes, they often asked for "the real McCoy," a phrase that still exists in today's vocabulary.