Elwood Haynes Museum

1915 South Webster Street
Kokomo, IN 46902


Elwood Haynes was born of English ancestry in Portland, Indiana on October 14, 1857.  He graduated from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1881, where he discovered tungston chrome steel.  In 1884, he attended Johns Hopkins University for post graduate studies.  

He was the "Father of the Natural Gas Industry" in Indiana.  In 1888, he invented the vapor thermostat.  In 1890, he moved to Greentown, Indiana as the Superintendent of the Indiana Natural Gas Company.  

Haynes conceived the idea of a "Horseless Carriage" while in Portland in 1891.  He moved to Kokomo, completed the plans and hired Elmer and Edgar Apperson to build the first automobile in 1893.  

After having discovered an alloy made of pure chromium and pure nickel, he began commercially producing automobiles under the Haynes Apperson logo in 1898.  Haynes also discovered an alloy to make a durable spark plug electrode in 1899.  It is from these alloys that Haynes Stellite Company was formed.  

In 1906, Haynes patented several cobalt-chromium alloys.  This work led to patents being issued for cobalt-chromium-molybednum-tungsten alloys, which he named Stellite.  

These cobalt-based alloys found immediate use as lathe tools in the First World War, tripling machining production.  Since that time, many new nickel and cobalt alloys have been invented and have found uses from prostetics to the Space Shuttle, jet engines, nuclear power plants, and submarines.  

"A man's work in life is not very great at best, when compared with the sum total of human effort, and after all, it is the good that we may be able to do for our fellow men and not the glory of achievement that really counts."-Elwood Haynes

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