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Traffic Light

First to apply and aquire a U.S. patent
for a three postion traffic signal

While others were experimenting and trying to market the three-position traffic signals, Garrett A. Morgan was the first to apply for the patent andwas granted. He later went and patented the tecnology in Great Britain and Canada too.

The only device that was used at the time was a device that featured a stop and go that had to mannually operated. The problems they had with the two-position signals was the accidents they were having at the intersections. The signal allowed no time to slow and stop, therfore causing collisions.

Traffic Light

Garrett Morgan designed his sign with a T-shaped pole that had a Stop, Go, and a stop position in all directions. The third position stopped traffic to continue on either side of sign. This made it safe for the motorist and the pedistrians trying to cross without fear of being hit.

Morgans signal could be positioned at what they called half-mask posture alerting motorist to proceed throught the intersection with caustion. The same effect the blinking red and yellow traffic signals do today.

Morgan's technology and traffic management was used all throughout North America until the red, yellow, and green lights were developed and are being utilized throughout the world. He eventually sold his rights to General Electric Corp. for a wopping $40,000. Morgan was awarded a citation for the traffic signal by the U.S. Government shortly before he passed away in 1963.