Conrad <I>Horowitz</I> Hubert

Conrad Horowitz Hubert

Death 12 Mar 1928 (aged 71)
Burial Unknown, Specifically: Currently Researching
Memorial ID 134358831 · View Source
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AKA Akiba Horowitz
Born: 15-Apr-1856
Birthplace: Minsk, Russia
Died: 12-Mar-1928
Location of death: Cannes, France

was a Russian inventor known for electric flashlights.

Russian immigrant Akiba Horowitz changed his name to Conrad Hubert when he came to America, where he ran a cigar store, and later a restaurant, a boarding house, and finally a novelty shop. At the novelty shop, his best-selling item was a battery-powered flashing tie clasp. With the development of smaller, more powerful "D" cell batteries, it became practical to carry a hand-held battery-powered torch or "flash light", so called because the battery was only able to sustain light for a few seconds.

The flashlight was invented by David Misell, a British man working in Hubert's New York shop in 1898. Little is known about Misell, but he had previously invented a wooden-cased signal light and a bicycle light, and he assigned the flashlight's patent rights to Hubert's new business, American Electrical Novelty and Manufacturing Company, which marketed flashlights under the Ever Ready brand name, and eventually became the American Ever Ready Company. (Numerous sources claim that the flashlight was invented by Joshua Lionel Cowen, of Lionel toy trains fame, but beyond the fact that both Cowen and Hubert lived in New York City in the late 1890s, there is scant evidence to support this story. Cowen invented a flash lamp, a completely different device that used electricity to set off a small chemical reaction, creating the flash needed for indoor portrait photography.)

Hubert later made several improvements to flashlight technology, and within a few years he was a millionaire. He never married, and at his death in 1928 he left the bulk of his fortune -- about $8M -- to the Conrad Hubert Fund, with the stipulation that the money be dispensed jointly by a Protestant, a Catholic, and a Jew. After his death, these slots were filled by former President Calvin Coolidge, former New York Governor Alfred E. Smith, and former Sears Roebuck executive Julius Rosenwald, who distributed Hubert's fortune to thirty-four charities. American Ever Ready has evolved into the present-day Energizer Holdings.


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  • Created by: R.C.
  • Added: 14 Aug 2014
  • Find a Grave Memorial 134358831
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Conrad Horowitz Hubert (15 Apr 1856–12 Mar 1928), Find a Grave Memorial no. 134358831, ; Maintained by R.C. (contributor 47303570) Unknown, who reports a Currently Researching.