Patents

From the early days of the concept of time recorders there was a rush in the USA and Europe to patent new ideas, methods and engineering modifications to existing inventions to make money from what was then a booming market. There were hundreds of patents applied for by many inventors from around 1855 to the mid 1900's, with several inventors forming companies which succeeded in turning invention into profitable business. Many inventors patented their machines or ideas in several countries to prevent 'copying' abroad, and many copies of original ideas by other inventors were made with subtle modifications to gain and retain production rights. Plagiarism appears to have been rife, resulting in many law suits between companies and inventors.

The patent documents give full technical details and drawings of the inventions, and also an excellent insight to the inventors and their location at the time.

Very old UK patent documents are kept by The British Library, but most UK patents from 1870 onwards have now been scanned and are available on-line from the European patent website http://worldwide.espacenet.com/, which also includes some worldwide patents. Many US patent documents are also available online using the Google patents search engine.

Here are some interesting and relevant readable and printable PDF samples of the hundreds of documents filed:

PDF
Inventor
Location

Patent Date
& Country

Machine
Comments
PDF
John Adams

Northampton
England

1855 GB
Time Check
Evidence of possibly the very first time recorder invention? Though I have included a document that gives his bankruptcy details in 1865
PDF
William Maberly Llewellin
Glasgow
Scotland
1883 USA
Time Check
Also refers to a 1881 GB patent
PDF
Bristol
England
1902 GB
Time Check
Recording improvement to a 1882 patent
PDF
Bristol England
1911 GB
Card Recorder
Recording improvement
PDF
Charles E Van Voorhis
Chicago USA
1888 USA
Autograph Recorder
A very early Autograph invention
PDF
Alexander Dey
Glasgow Scotland
1889 USA
Dial Recorder
Also refers to a 1888 GB patent
PDF
Alexander Dey
Glasgow Scotland
1903 USA
Dial Recorder
A patent registered jointly by the Dey brothers while living in different countries
John Dey
Syracuse NY - USA
PDF
Alexander Dey
Syracuse NY - USA
1904 USA
Dial recorder
A Patent Registered jointly by the Dey brothers now both in the USA
John Dey
PDF
Peter G Giroud
New York USA
1891 USA
Time Stamp
A patent to improve an earlier model
PDF
The Accurate Time Stamp Company
New York USA
1892 USA
Time Stamp
An improved design to stamp a pre-printed card to record daily work hours
PDF

Willard Le Grand Bundy

Auburn NY USA
1888 USA
Key Recorder
A very early key recorder design
PDF
Binghampton NY - USA
1891 USA
Key Recorder
The first production key recorder
PDF
1895 GB
Dial Recorder
Bundy's version of Dey's invention
PDF
1898 GB
Autograph Recorder
Bundy's Autograph version
PDF
1901 USA
Card Recorder
A Bundy Card recorder
PDF
1902 USA
Card Recorder
Improvements to a Card Recorder
PDF
Frank Brook
Huddersfield England
1893 GB
Time Checker
An early Frank Brook patent
PDF
1897 GB
Autograph Recorder
Frank Brook's Autograph machine
PDF
1905 GB
Dial Recorder
Brook's version of Dey's invention
PDF
Edward G Watkins (Simplex)
Gardner USA
1893 USA
Button Recorder
A very early button press design
PDF
Daniel M Cooper
Rochester NY USA
1894 USA
Card Recorder
One of the first Card Recorders
PDF
John Thomas Gent
Leicester England
1894 GB
Time Check
An early mechanism patent from Gent
PDF
William Whitehead
Manchester England
1894 GB
Autograph Recorder
An early Autograph machine patent, also refers to a 1891 patent
PDF

J J Stockall Jr

London England
1898 GB
Time Check
An early Stockall patent
PDF
1899 GB
Time Check
Improvement on the above machine
PDF
1902 GB
Card Recorder
Stockall's card machine
PDF
JJ Stockall Jr
Huddersfield England
1908 GB
Card Recorder
Stockall-Brook 2 colour print mechanism patent
Frank Brook
PDF
John W Deubner
Chicago USA
1899 USA
Key Recorder
A different Key Recorder patent
PDF
W H Witham
London England
1899 USA
Photograph Recorder
An amazing invention - but too far ahead of it's time to catch on!
PDF
A.L. Jaynes (ITR)
Buffalo USA
1902 USA
Card Recorder
One of the first ITR patents
PDF
Arthur Henry Gledhill
Halifax England
1911 GB
Card Recorder
A very early Gledhill patent - with no mention of Frank Brook