Pratt, Francis Asbury

Pratt, Francis Asbury

(1827–1902) inventor; born in Woodstock, Vt. He was an apprentice, journeyman, and finally a contractor in the machinist trade. He met Amos Whitney at the Colt armory in Hartford, Conn. (1852), and the two did machine work together and then formed Pratt & Whitney (1865). They made machine tools for making guns and sewing machines. He promoted the use of interchangeable parts and sold guns to many European nations (1865–75). He worked to establish a standard system of gauges and patented a number of important machine tools.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.