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Hotpoint standard iron, 1915

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Earl H. Richardson, a meter reader in California, spent his spare time experimenting with electrifying flat irons.

He invented this iron after his wife, Mary, suggested he move the hot spot from the center to the front of the iron, making it easier to press around buttonholes, ruffles and pleats.

Richardson produced a number of these versions and loaned several to local women to try for a week; at the end of that time the women were so taken with "the iron with the hot point" that they refused to give them up.

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