Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Adams, Isaac

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ADAMS, Isaac, inventor, b. in Rochester, N. H., in 1803; d. in Sandwich, N. H., 19 July, 1883. His education was limited. At an early age he was a factory operative, and afterward learned the trade of cabinet maker, but in 1824 went to Boston and sought work in a machine shop. In 1828 he invented the printing-press that bears his name. It was introduced in 1830, and came into almost universal use, being still so popular as to warrant its manufacture in more than thirty different sizes. He improved it in 1834, making it substantially what it now is. The distinctive feature of his presses is that the impression is given by lifting a flat bed with its form against a stationary platen. The sheets are fed by hand. He engaged with his brother Seth in the manufacture of these and other machines, and acquired a competency. He was a member of the Massachusetts senate in 1840. His last years were spent in retirement.