THE FIRE OF GENIUS: Presidents and Patents

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Historic Patents signed by the first eight U.S. Presidents alongside significant local patents

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Bringing together the largest display of Patents signed by U.S. Presidents alongside present day local inventions, THE FIRE OF GENIUS: Presidents and Patents showcases the ingenuity of the U.S. Patent System and the forefather’s commitment to encouraging achievement and embracing talent.

At the height of the Enlightenment and beginning of the Industrial Revolution, people were rapidly creating new products or building on existing technologies to improve their lives and secure their livelihoods. In an attempt to improve the accessibility and protection of innovation for all, the forefathers prioritized a radically new patent system. So important was this concept, that they provided Congress with the power to generate a method of granting patents in Article 1 of the Constitution.

Through their dedication to the promotion of the “useful arts”, the U.S. Patent System has granted over 11 million patents. The only president to own a patent, Abraham Lincoln said the U.S. Patent System “adds the fuel of interest to the fire of genius in the discovery and production of new and useful things.” Through art, science, and industry, Peoria has paved the way in innovation and brought to fruition the hopes of America’s forefathers.

The first of its kind exhibition will showcase local patents and inventions including Natural Fiber Welding, and Lux Blox.

Sponsored by Richard and Becky Beem, Bielfeldt Foundation, Visionary Society, and Friends of History.