Thursday’s Google Doodle celebrates the 250th birthday of Scottish chemist Charles Macintosh:
Charles Macintosh was a Scottish Chemist who invented waterproof material which led to the modern raincoat. Macintosh, who was born 250 years ago on Thursday, has been celebrated with a Google Doodle showing the rain bouncing off him. To celebrate his birthday the doodle shows an illustration of Charles Macintosh standing in a raincoat and rain droplets bouncing off him.
Charles Macintosh born on 29, December 1766in Glasgow as the son of George Macintosh and Mary Moore. He was first employed as a clerk. The world remembers him for his most popular invention ‘Macintosh raincoat’, that is named after him.
How did the Macintosh invented raincoat ?
Living in Scotland before 1824 was hard. There are more rainy days than dry ones in the country, and unless you had an umbrella – a rarity at the time – going outside landed you with the serious risk of being soaked through. Most ways of waterproofing clothes at the time involved oiled fabrics, which were heavy, not to mention foul-smelling. Macintosh while growing up in Glasgow devoted much of his spare time to chemistry. His habit of experimenting with various chemicals, made him realize that naphtha — a by product of tar — could easily be dissolved in India rubber.
This mixture resulted in formation of a paste which had the ability to repel water. By sandwiching the coating between two pieces of cloth, Macintosh was able to create a fabric that, while the outside could get wet, would protect the wearer from water. In 1823, Macintosh was granted a patent on the waterproof fabric.
Development of Macintosh raincoat:
The technology had problems at first, putting stitching in the material could lead it to let water in, and it could get stiff in hot weather. Tailors refused to go near it, and Macintosh set up his own company, which was later merged with that of Thomas Hancock, who had a system many saw as superior, especially once it started to use vulcanized rubber, which improves its durability.
Although raincoats ended up in many different guises and styles, and the mac became an all-encompassing term, the Mackintosh company (the k was added by many writers, and stuck) continued. It was bought by Dunlop Rubber in 1925 and continues to the present day despite being on the brink of closure in the 1990s, and its coats now sell for hundreds of pounds after a move upmarket.
Charles Macintosh passed away in 1843 at Dunchattan, Scotland and was buried in the churchyard of Glasgow Cathedral. His name is added to the impressive 17th century monument. Apart from India, the doodle was up in US, Canada and parts of Europe and Africa.
What is Google Doodle?
A Google Doodle is a special, temporary alteration of the logo on Google’s homepage that is intended to celebrate holidays, events, achievements and people. The Google Doodle has become a regular event, where Google celebrating many well-known events and holidays.