Inventing has been a human practice from ancient civilizations to the modern era. While many things have become essential parts of everyday life and beyond, some inventions were too bizarre to make it mainstream. They serve as fascinating windows into the minds of their creative inventors.
During the Second World War, a major concern for people was having their houses collapse on them during nighttime air raids. To try and protect themselves, many had a Morrison shelter in their homes. It was a covered “bed” that could prevent a sleeping person from being crushed. An added bonus was that it could also serve as a table!
Designed and developed in 1929, the Rail Zeppelin was a unique railcar that held the world’s speed record on rail. It travelled a whopping 143 miles per hour and could make the 160-mile trip between Hamburg and Spandau, Germany, in just one hour and 36 minutes!
Bicycles have taken on many different shapes and forms, but what makes the Cyclomer unique is that it was intended for use on bodies of water. Introduced in 1932, the Cyclomer was designed with floaters and a peddle propeller to allow it to both float on water and move forward. It is considered the world’s first amphibious bicycle.
Designed to make reading in bed easier, Hamblin glasses were first developed in 1936. Through the use of a periscope, these glasses allow people to lie on their backs and read without having to strain their necks. Despite being invented almost a century ago, many avid readers still use this invention today!
While the Roomba may feel like a modern invention, these little vacuums were actually invented decades ago. Patented back in 1957, you could control the robot vacuum with a remote, practically hands-free. It was part of the Whirlpool Miracle Kitchen of the Future, promising to make chores a breeze.
Before there was streaming of music on cellphone devices, people relied on the radio to listen to their favorite music or hear the latest news. It was such a staple of daily life that people began putting radios in everything, including their baby strollers. While walking with their children, mothers could make their daily walks more entertaining by bumping some tunes.
Tandem bicycles have been around for a long time, but none have ever looked as extreme as this puppy. Featuring two spots for pedaling, a seat up front for a passenger, and even a sewing station on the go, this bicycle gets the whole family out of the house together. However, as you can imagine, the bicycle never really took off.
While there is absolutely no way this kind of thing would fly today, people used to have cages fixed outside of their apartment windows to put their babies in. By doing so, they felt they were giving their babies fresh air and healthy sun exposure. Thankfully, the practice eventually fell out of favor.
There are some things in life that mechanical devices can make easier, like pencil sharpeners or tire pumps, but one thing that gives us hesitation is a shaving machine. However, a machine that could shave the faces of multiple men at once was a very real thing. The invention never took off, and it’s probably for the best, as we aren’t sure how safe it could really be.
Spinning Pasta Fork
Pasta enthusiasts should get excited for this next one. Frustrated with struggling to twirl his spaghetti on his fork, Russell E. Oakes invented a spinning pasta fork to make the job easier. A hand crank at the base would twirl the fork, and all that was left was to lift the fork to your mouth – genius!
Many people claim to have two left feet when it comes to dancing, using it as the reason not to dance. However, this next invention renders that excuse null and void. Joined at the toes, dance partners can swing in unison with ballroom shoes. Although, if you weren’t in perfect unison, things might have gotten a little clumsy.
So, there you have it—those quirky and downright bizarre inventions from the past. It’s wild to think about the crazy ideas our ancestors came up with, isn’t it? These oddball creations may seem outlandish, but hey, they’re a reminder that our journey through time is filled with surprises, weird twists, and the occasional head-scratching innovation.