James Monroe
Patent for a Washing Maching
Location of original: Offices of Beem Patent Law Firm, Chicago, IL

Key Signers
President: James Monroe
Secretary of State: John Quincy Adams
Attorney General: William Wirt

Patent Information
Date signed: May 6, 1819
Inventor: Beardsley Hendryx
Invention Title: Washing Machine

Text from Patent
The plan of said machine hereinafter specified, the exclusive use and benefit of which I, the said Beardsley Hendryx, claim as consisting this my invention is as follows, to wit.

A box or vat is first constructed of suitable dimensions to contain the clothes to be washed, and the water for washing the same, lay about the feet in length, 18 inches in width and 14 inches deep; the bottom whereof may be straight or curvaceous. At the ends should be frames, lids, hung with hinges to prevent the water from escaping when the machine is in operation.

Into the above box is to be introduced a washer constructed as follows. It is to be of sufficient size to nearly fill the whole box, having a small space on each side of about one fourth of an inch and on each end of about one inch measuring the periphery of said washer. The undersurface of which is to be the segment of a circle of about four feet in diameter and may be constructed of one entire piece of wood and _ across the bottom. But the manner in which I would recommend would be to take a number of small pieces of wood or any suitable material of about 2 inches in width, three fourths of an inch in the _, rounded on the outer or under edges / exposed to the clothes at about three eights of an inch _ framed into two pieces of boards in which consists the sides of the washer between these two pieces of board, which are of course merely as far asunder the aforesaid box is wide in the inner side; and when the small pieces of wood is to be placed a block of wood / which of those can be a block or any other suitable material of forty, fifty, or sixty pounds weight in order to give sufficient weight to the washer; into which is inserted an upright post which I would term a balance post, by a _ fitted to a corresponding _. The above mentioned lid block ought to be contracted so much in width so will let the water escape with ease through the ends of the washer and also in _ that it may be turned up on one end to take out the clothes and replace others. The balance post ought to be small at the lower end that it should not interfere with the end of the base when the washer is turned up as aforesaid but should be of flexible length; and the size at the top should be sufficient to balance the washer as it vibrates from [text continues on additional page not shown].

In Hendryx washing machine patent, the bound document is signed and sealed, as displayed on the left. The right side appears to be the patent application filed by the inventor. The text is written in the first person and the handwriting is much less stylistic than that of other patents written by scribes.