Saugus Iron Works in Saugus Massachusetts


Joseph Jenks


The application for his water wheel patent.

"...whereas the Lord hath beene pleased to giue mee knowledg in Makeing, and erecting of Engines of Mills to goe by water for the speedy dispatch of much worke with few mens labour in litle tyme my desire is to Jmproue this talent for the publike good and benifitt and seruice of this country; to which end my Jntention and purpose is (if God permitt) to build a Mill for making of sithes; and alsoe a new Jnvented Saw Mill, and diuers other Engines for making of diuers sorts of edge tooles; whereby the Country may haue sush necessaryes in short tyme at farre cheaper Rates then now they can; Now yor petitioner doth humbly beseech this Honoured Court that you would please to grant mee this priueledg; and to order that no other person shall set upp or Vse any such new Invention or trade for the space of fowerteene yeeres without my licence; which hath been vjuall priveledge and liberty Granted by the high Court of Parlayment in England to men that doe first sett vpon workes of this nature; least after your petitioner haue expended his estate, study, and labour, and haue brought things to perfection; Another when hee seeth it, maketh the like; and soe J loose the benifitt of that I have studied many yeeres before. . .

First Patent in America

At a generall Courte at Boston
the 6th of the 3th mo 1646
Jenkes monopolye

The cort consideringe ye necessity of raising such manifactures of engins of mills to go by water for speedy dispatch of much worke wth few hands, and being sufficiently informed of ye ability of ye petitionr to pforme such workes grant his petition (yt no othr pson shal set up, or use any such new invention, for fourteen yeares w'hout ye licence of him ye said Joseph Jenkes) so far as concernes any such new invention, & so as it shalbe alwayes in ye powr of this corte to restrain ye exportation of such manifactures, & ye prizes of them to moderation if occasion so require.

"The Annals of Lynn"
The selectman of Boston agreed with Mr. Joseph Jenks `for an ingine to carry water in case of fire.'

This was the first fire engine made in America.


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