Hiram W Hayden, American inventor and engineer, c 1870-1890.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Hiram W Hayden (1820-1904) was a prolific engineer and inventor whose inventions included over 30 lamps, various military inventions including rifles and cannons, and one of the first daguerreotypes put on paper. In 1851 Hayden also revolutionised bras and copper kettle-making by spinning disks of sheet bras through a die. Together with Israel Holmes and John C. Booth, Hayden started the company of Holmes, Booth & Haydens in Waterbury, Connecticut in 1853 to roll sheet metal and manufacture metal goods on a large scale, principally lamps, kerosene oil burners, and photographic plates. The company operated independently until it became part of the American Bras Company in 1901.