Florence Parpart – Patented the Modern Refrigerator
The fridge: An essential appliance in our kitchens today that ensures the food we store is kept in a good condition. Since the beginning of history, humans have searched for ways to preserve food.
At the beginning of the twentieth century (specifically in 1914), Florence Parpart invented the modern electric fridge.
Parpart also received a patent for a much improved street-cleaning machine in 1900, which she negotiated and sold to cities throughout the United States.
Very little is known of Florence Parpart, other than census records and United States Government patent applications. Born in the Hoboken, New Jersey, Parpart was listed as a housewife in the United States Census for the majority of her life. As is the case with many early female inventors, local sources paint an entirely different picture.
Parpart won a second patent for the modern refrigerator, rendering the icebox obsolete for those with access to electricity. Many believe that Parpart’s then fiancée was highly skilled in electrical circuitry and assisted in the design of the first prototype. Already an experienced entrepreneur, Parpart was highly successful in marketing and selling her refrigerators. She attended multiple trade shows, developed her own advertising campaigns and managed the production operations, alongside her husband, of additional refrigerators. Parpart was a true female entrepreneur and gifted inventor.