Fun Fact: A Davenport Native Invented The Bread Slicer
You know the express, "the best invention since sliced bread." Well that express and sliced bread may have not been a thing if it wasn't for a Davenport native.
It's always great to learn something new. The other day, I was thinking to myself, "what famous inventors came from the Quad Cities?" After doing a little search on the internet, I found out that the inventor of the bread slicer is from Davenport.
Looking back on my 26 years of life, I think I learned that fact either in school or a trivia night at a bar somewhere (probably the bar). Clearly, that fact slipped my mind and it was great to relearn the invention of the bread slicer, and its tie to the Quad Cities.
So, who was the hungry genius who came up with this invention? His name is Otto Rohwedder. According to Wikipedia, Rohwedder was born in Davenport July 7th in 1880.
Fast forward to 1927 when the bread slicer comes into play. That year, Rohwedder successfully designed a machine that not only sliced the bread, but also wrapped it. He applied to patent his invention on November 26th, 1928, and was given the patent on July 12th, 1932, according the United States Patent and Trademark Office and Google Patents.
Rohwedder sold the patent rights to the Micro-Westco Co. of Bettendorf, and joined the company, where he became vice-president and sales manager.
According to the Davenport Library, William E. Bettendorf, one of the brothers that Bettendorf was named after, created a bread slicer after Rohwedder that was different in the fact that it made wavy slices. Below is Bettendorf's patent.
Rohwedder retired from Micro-Westco Co.at age 71. Him and his wife, Carrie, moved to Albion, Michigan after his retirement. Rohwedder died in Concord, Michigan, on November 8th, 1960,and is buried Albion.
Thank you to Otto Rohwedder for giving us the greatest invention since... well, sliced bread.