Charles Goodyear (December 29, 1800 – July 1, 1860) was an American self-taught chemist and manufacturing engineer who developed vulcanized rubber, for which he received patent number 3633 from the United States Patent Office on June 15, 1844.
Though Goodyear is often credited with the invention of vulcanized rubber, modern evidence has proven that the Mesoamericans used stabilized rubber for balls and other objects as early as 1600 BC., and Thomas Hancock had a patent pending for a vulcanization process 8 weeks before Goodyear.
Goodyear's discovery of the vulcanization process was accidental, after five years of searching for a more stable rubber and stumbling upon the effectiveness of heating after Thomas Hancock.
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