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Samuel Colt
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    (July 19, 1814-January 10, 1862)
    Born in Hartford, Connecticut
    Created the practical revolver and started the Colt firearms company
    Also created the underwater electrical cable and the underwater detonator
    His first few attempts at starting a business failed.
    He deliberately started an arms race in Europe to help his arms sales.
    For a time he toured performing an act where he would have audience members inhale laughing gas and make fools out of themselves.
    He was indentured to a farmer at age 11 and went to sea at 13.
    He initially had trouble selling his revolver because military and political leaders didn't trust the technology.
    He was close friends with Samuel Morse for whom his underwater electrical cable was adopted for telegraph use.
    His underwater detonator led to the creation of mines and torpedos.
    He was a very progressive employer for his time; he limited his employees workday to ten hours, provided for a one hour lunch break, provided bathrooms in his factories, and subsidized a social club for their enjoyment.
    He was using the assembly line and standardized parts decades before Henry Ford.
    When he died he was worth 15 million dollars in 1862 dollars which equals 15 zillion in today's dollars.

Credit: tom_jeffords

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