Things you didn’t know were invented by women

Things you didn’t know were invented by women

As the world mark International Women’s Day (IWD) today, take a look at some very useful items invented by women.

Windshield Wiper

Things you didn’t know were invented by women

The Windshield Wiper

Many will think, the ‘wiper’ would have been invented by a male, but no a female- a great woman invented this very useful part of a vehicle.

Mary Anderson, developed a squeegee on a spindle that was attached to a handle on the inside of the vehicle. When the driver needed to clear the glass, he simply pulled on the handle and the squeegee wiped the precipitation from the windshield. Anderson received the patent for her device in 1903; just 10 years later, thousands of Americans owned a car with her invention.

The Paper Bag

America got a brand new paper bag when cotton mill worker Margaret Knight invented a machine to make them with a flat square bottom in 1868. (Paper bags originally looked more like envelopes.) A man named Charles Annan saw her design and tried to patent the idea first. Knight filed a lawsuit and won the patent fair and square in 1871.

Liquid Paper

Bette Nesmith Graham was not a very good typist. Still, the high school dropout, worked her way through the secretarial pool to become the executive secretary for the chairman of the board of the Texas Bank and Trust.

Things you didn’t know were invented by women

Paper Mate Liquid Paper Correction Fluid

One day, Graham watched workers painting a holiday display on a bank window. She noticed that when they made mistakes, they simply added another layer of paint to cover them up, and she thought she could apply that idea to her typing blunders. Using her blender, Graham mixed up a water-based tempera paint with dye that matched her company's stationary. She took it to work and, using a fine watercolor brush, she was able to quickly correct her errors. Soon, the other secretaries were clamoring for the product, which Graham continued to produce in her kitchen. Graham was fired from her job for spending so much time distributing what she called "Mistake Out," but in her unemployment she was able to tweak her mixture, rename the product Liquid Paper and receive a patent in 1958.


Josephine Cochrane, who received the patent for the first working dishwasher, didn't spend that much time washing dishes. The real impetus for her invention was frustration over her servants breaking her heirloom china after fancy dinners.

Watch below some things you might not realize were invented by women

Invisible Glass

Katharine Blodgett, General Electric's first female scientist, discovered a way to transfer thin monomolecular coatings to glass and metals in 1935. The result: glass that eliminated glare and distortion. It clearly revolutionized cameras, microscopes, eyeglasses, and more.

Disposable Diapers

Things you didn’t know were invented by women

Baby diaper

Marion Donovan didn't take all the mess out of diaper changing when she patented the waterproof Boater in 1951. But she changed parenting—and well, babies—forever. The waterproof diaper cover, originally made with a shower curtain, was first sold at Saks Fifth Avenue. Donovan sold the patent to the Keko Corporation for $1 million and then created an entirely disposable model a few years later. Pampers was born in 1961.



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