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James J. Mapes patents the first artificial fertilizer, a super-phosphate of lime

Farming and Agriculture, iconic image
11/22/1859
James Jay Mapes received the first patent in the United States for artificial fertilizer on this date.  A former professor of Chemistry, he had developed the use of a super-phosphate of lime on his farm near Newark, New Jersey. Phosphates were to transform American farming methods.  Mapes died in January, 1866.  (By John Osborne)
Source Citation: 
Travis Brown, Popular Patents: America's first inventions from the airplane to the zipper (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2000), 86.

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How to Cite This Page: "James J. Mapes patents the first artificial fertilizer, a super-phosphate of lime," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College, http://hd.housedivided.dickinson.edu/node/30004.