Vulcanized Rubber

Charles Goodyear received two patents for methods of making rubber better.

Charles Goodyear Vulcanization of Rubber
Charles Goodyear - Vulcanization of Rubber.

Caoutchouc was the name for rubber used by the Indians of Central and South America.

History of Caoutchouc

Besides pencil erasers, rubber was used for many other products, however, the products were not standing up to extreme temperatures, becoming brittle in winter. During the 1830's, many inventors tried to develop a rubber product that could last year-round. Charles Goodyear was one of those inventors, whose experiments put Goodyear into debt and involved in several patent lawsuits.

Charles Goodyear

In 1843, Charles Goodyear discovered that if you removed the sulphur from rubber then heated it, it would retain its elasticity. This process called vulcanization made rubber waterproof and winter-proof and opened the door for a enormous market for rubber goods.

On June 24, 1844, Charles Goodyear was granted patent #3,633 for vulcanized rubber.

Charles Goodyear - Biography

A biography of Charles Goodyear that covers the early history, the vulcanization process, and how Charles Goodyear had to defend his patent.