(July 31, 1803-March 8, 1889)
Born in Langbanshyttan, Sweden
Mechanical engineer and inventor
Designed steam engines, screw propellers and torpedo boats
Best known for designing the ironclad USS Monitor for the Union during the US Civil War
Why he might be annoying
While serving in the Swedish army, he fathered a child out of wedlock (1824).
His commercial failure in marketing his early inventions resulted in two stints in debtors prison, followed by a declaration of bankruptcy (1835).
His design for the Monitor was initially rejected by the Navy as too radical.
Why he might not be annoying
At fourteen, he was appointed as a surveyor for the Gotha Ship Canal, where he oversaw work by 600 Swedish soldiers.
When he designed the USS Princeton, perhaps the most advanced warship of its day, Captain Robert Stockton attempted to steal credit for it -- until one of the ship's guns exploded, at which point Stockton shifted responsibility back to Ericsson.
The gun that exploded actually had been designed by Stockton (based on an imperfect copy of a different gun designed by Ericsson).
Ironclads based on the Monitor's design played a key role in maintaining the Union's blockade of Confederate ports during the Civil War.
Credit: C. Fishel
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Year In Review:
For 2017, as of last week, Out of 2 Votes: 0% Annoying
In 2016, Out of 6 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
In 2015, Out of 3 Votes: 66.67% Annoying
In 2014, Out of 11 Votes: 45.45% Annoying
In 2013, Out of 26 Votes: 46.15% Annoying
In 2012, Out of 13 Votes: 30.77% Annoying
In 2011, Out of 14 Votes: 42.86% Annoying
In 2010, Out of 13 Votes: 15.38% Annoying
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