History of the Vacuum Cleaner

Timeline created by vacuumproject
  • First Patent Recorded

    First Patent Recorded
    A vacuum sweeper was produced by Daniel Hess on July 10, 1860. Hess called his invention a carpet sweeper, not a vacuum. The machine had a rotating brush like other sweepers, but also included an elaborate bellows mechanism for suction.
  • First hand pumped vacuum

    First hand pumped vacuum
    In 1869, Ives McGaffey invented the first hand pumped vacuum. It created suction with a hand-cranked, belt-driven fan.
  • The Carpet Sweeper

    The Carpet Sweeper
    In 1876 the carpet sweeper was invented by Melville Bissell.
  • Gas Powered Vacuum

    Gas Powered Vacuum
    John Thurman invented the first gas powered vacuum in 1899.
  • The Vacuum Tube

    The Vacuum Tube
    In 1901, Hubert Cecil Booth introduced the first electric vacuum cleaner model. It used the technology of the vacuum tube.
  • David T. Kenney

    David T. Kenney's nine patents between 1903 and 1913 formed a foundation for the industry of vacuum cleaners in America. Kenney also created the Vacuum Cleaner Manufacturers' Association in 1919.
  • Vacuum Pipe nozzles

    Vacuum Pipe nozzles
    1905 Walter Griffith patented a vacuum cleaner with a variety of nozzles that could be attached tp the pipe.
  • Moveable Electric Vacuums

    Moveable Electric Vacuums
    In 1905, the Chapman and Skinner firm in San Francisco invented a moveable electric vacuum. It was large and heavy, however, which made it difficult for individual use, and it did not sell well.
  • Smaller vacuum invented

    Smaller vacuum invented
    James Spangler recieved patents for the first elecric cleaning device that used a rotating brush and an electrical apparatus. He came up with this when he thought that his old carpet-cleaning device was the reason for his asthma.
  • Electric motor

    Electric motor
    In 1910 Charles Beach and Frederick Osius invented a small motor that ran on electrical power and used it in the first easily portable vacuum cleaner.
  • Disposable Bags

    Disposable Bags
    In 1920, Air-Way Sanitizor of Toledo, Ohio introduced the first vacuum cleaner with a disposable bag so that the waste could be easily disposed of.
  • Positive agitation

    Positive agitation
    In 1926, Hoover developed a positive agitation vacuum that greatly increased the efficiency of dirt removal.
  • Plastic and Headlights

    Plastic and Headlights
    In 1930 the first plastic vacuum cleaners hit the market and headlights were added to some models.
  • Households

    Vacuum cleaners became commonplace items in households after World War II.
  • The Hoover Constellation

    The Hoover Constellation
    This was a vacuum that was designed by the Hoover Harness and Leather Goods Factory to hover above the ground while it cleaned.
  • Pool Vac

    Pool Vac
    In 1974 Ferdinand Chauvier invented the swimming pool vacuum. It used water pressure to suck dirt and debris from the bottoms of vacuums. His design is still in use today as one of the most effective pool vacuuming methods.
  • Cyclone Vacuums

    Cyclone Vacuums
    Created by James Dyson in 1980, this vacuum did not use traditional bag or filter systems. Instead, it sent the air stream through one or more cylinders, along a high-speed spiral path.
  • Robots

    Robotic vacuum cleaners entered the market in 2002. They amazed busy housewives with their indepencence and efficiency. These vacuums use detectors to avoid bumping into things. Helen Greiner and her colleagues at iRobot introduce Roomba, the robot vacuum cleaner.