In ten days, I received a package at my country house near Philadelphia, containing the desired colors, and I persuaded a friend to drive to a mountain some five miles distant, and burn them to show me the color. As the months rolled on I grew desperate.
They also awarded Martha the contract to manufacture them. Many accounts of wrecks and rescues describe the use of the Coston flare, which was instrumental in saving thousands of lives.
At this time the whole country was Martha j coston a ferment over the successful laying of the Atlantic cable, and tremendous was the excitement on the day when the first cable dispatch flashed under the sea from Queen Victoria to President Buchanan.
His work on the signal flares, while important, was limited to plans and chemical formulas. Yet Coston persevered and became living proof that women could invent in any realm if they did not give up. He also experimented with color-coded night signals to allow communication between ships, which at that time was limited to visual signals such as flags during the day and lanterns at night.
She faced two big challenges before she could come up with a design. With a limited knowledge of chemistry and pyrotechnicsshe relied on the advice of hired chemists and fireworks experts, with mixed results.
The challenge was to create flares that were bright and long-lasting enough for ship-to-ship or ship-to-land signaling over great distances, but convenient enough to be used in a coded combination of colors. After the Civil War, the Coston flare was used heavily by the U.
Finally, authorized by an Act of Congress on August 5,the U. At the age of 16, Martha eloped with Benjamin Franklin Coston, a promising young inventor.
During the next two-year period from until the beginning of the Civil War, the U. During this time, he developed a cannon percussion primer. Navy recommended the use of her flares to Secretary of the Navy Isaac Toucey in He died in Novemberleaving Martha and three young children and nearly destitute.
Coston flares were used extensively by the U. I at once entered into negotiations with the pyrotechnist, and having received satisfactory references took him into my confidence, and engaged him to make further experiments.
In brief summary, the report contained three main points: She finally invented and patented a system of red, white, and green "Pyrotechnic Night Signals" that worked well patent 23, granted in Coston Martha Coston developed signal flares that are still used by the U.Martha J. Coston Pyrotechnic signaling system Widowed at the age of 21, Martha Coston () of Philadelphia met the challenge of providing for her four children by inventing a system of maritime signal flares that would later help the North win the Civil War.
Martha J. Coston (), was an inventor and successful businesswoman during the second half of the 19th century. She made her mark with one invention, which she wrote about in her one book, an autobiography, A Signal Success.
Wrighten by Martha J Coston and Lippincott Publishing co. A Woman With Flare, By C. KAY LARSON, New York Times, November 2, Martha Coston at Find a Grave. Martha Coston was born in Baltimore in the year of She was left with four children to take care of after the death of her husband.
This happened when she was only Martha Hunt Coston was born in in Baltimore, and moved to Philadelphia with her widowed mother, brothers, and sisters in the s.
At the age of 16, Martha eloped with Benjamin Franklin Coston, a promising young inventor. The young couple were living a. Martha Coston developed signal flares that are still used by the U.S. Navy today. At the age of 21, Martha J.
Coston found herself widowed and w.Download