Evolution of a Wheelchair

By dil
  • Jan 1, 600

    Chinese Wheelchair

    Chinese Wheelchair
    The earliest record of a wheelchair dates back to the 6th century as an inscription on a stone slate in China.
  • Self propelled

    Self propelled
    In 1655, Stephen Farfler, who was a paraplegic, built a self-propelling chair on a 3 wheel chassis.
  • Bath Chair

    Bath Chair
    This is a rolling light carriage with a folding hood that can open or close. It was mounted on three or four wheels and drawn or pushed by hand. There was an option that it could be mounted on four wheels and pulled by a horse. It was invented by James Heath of Bath, England. It was usually padded so it would have been comfortable. You would need someone else to help you get around because it wasn't self-propelled.
  • Basic Chair

    Basic Chair
    The basic chair has a seat, foot rests, and four wheels (two caster wheels at the front and two large wheels at the back). It was clearly not very comfortable.
  • Folding Wheelchair

    Folding Wheelchair
    The steel folding wheelchair was invented in 1932 by Harry Jennings for his friend. It was light weight and collapsable so that it could fit in the trunk of a car. It was also padded so the comfort was improved. They also added some rims to make it easier and more comfortable for the user to move the chair themselves. There are still handles on the back for someone to push if required.
  • Power (electric) Wheelchairs

    Power (electric) Wheelchairs
    George Klein, a Canadian, invented the electric wheelchair for veterans of the second World War. THey are well padded so they are comfortable, but the material used is not very breathable, so the occupant gets warm. The charger is either on the unit or it is a separate unit.
  • Rigid Wheelchair

    Rigid Wheelchair
    The rigid wheelchair was invented in the 1980's mostly for athletes. Some of them can go as fast as 30 km/hr. It is also self-propelling and well cushioned.