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Clarence Crum, Inventor

7/24/2004:

Clarence Crum, from Hannah, received at least two patents for his inventions. On July 4th, 1913, the Hansboro Pioneer reported that Crum received a patent for “an invention of his, which will be a great convenience to motor drivers. The device will cause the lights on an automobile to follow curves or turns in the road automatically. It will work on any kind of car and will be a splendid rig to take the danger spots out of a crooked road on a dark night. Clarence has had several inquiries from auto firms to secure a right to the use of the device.”

Seven years earlier, on July 26th, the Pioneer reported that Crum had received his first patent for a “rein holder, a clever little contrivance which fastens to the dashboard of the buggy and keeps the reins from falling under the feet of the team. The Rolla Star,” the article continued, “is out with the suggestion that he should now patent a contrivance that would enable a fellow to drive with one hand when out riding with his girl. (Others) say there is a scheme that would beat any patented device - let the girl drive the team.”

Dakota Datebook written by Merry Helm