Moore, Hiram

Moore, Hiram
b. 19 July 1801 New England, USA
d. c. 1874 Wisconsin, USA
American farmer and inventor who developed the first combine harvester.
Hiram Moore was the son of a New England stonemason. In 1831 he moved to West Michigan to farm, and he and his two brothers settled in Climax in Kalamazoo County.
Stimulated by a conversation with his neighbour, John Hascall, Moore made a model harvesting machine, which he patented in 1834. By the following year he had built a full-scale machine, but it broke down very quickly. In 1835 he successfully harvested 3 acres left standing for the purpose. Each year alterations and additions were made to the machine, and by 1839 over 50 acres were successfully harvested and threshed in the one operation by the Moore-Hascall machine.
During further developments which took place in the 1840s, Moore sold much of his interest to Senator Lucius Lyon. By the late 1840s this source of funding was no longer available, and attempts to extend the patent became embroiled in similar attempts by McCormick and Hussey and were blocked by rural pressures stemming from the fear that high machinery prices would ensue if the patents continued.
Discouraged, Moore moved to Brandon, Wisconsin, where he farmed 600 acres. He was still developing various machines, but was no longer actively involved in the development of the combine harvester. He continued to work his own machine, with which he would cut just a few acres each year.
Further Reading
Graeme Quick and Wesley Buchele, 1978, The Grain Harvesters, American Society of Agricultural Engineers (describes Hiram Moore's achievements in detail).

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

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