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 Charles Pigeon

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Charles Pigeon

  • Birth 29 Mar 1838
  • Death 18 Mar 1915
  • Burial Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France
  • Plot Division 22, SMALL cemetery.
  • Memorial ID 3460

French inventor of a non-exploding gas lamp. He is also noted for his unique tombstone. Born in Mesnil-Lieubray, France, about thirty miles east of Rouen, in Normandy. He began his adult career as a salesman in Paris, where with his close friend, Ernest Cognacq, became founders of the "Samaritaine" department stores. Eventually, Pigeon began dealing in cycle lamps, mining lamps, and other types of flammable lamps. There was a great public need for a non-exploding gasoline lamp, so Pigeon set about designing one that worked well, and on June 9, 1884 he obtained a patent for his new lamp. It would make him both famous and wealthy, as he was the first to produce and market a patented, non-flammable, non-explosive portable gas lamp. He was also the first to recognize the need for a unique logo for his device, a pigeon bird resting on a terrestrial sphere holding a lamp in its beak. He presented the Pigeon Lamp at the 1900 World's Fair in Paris, where it received notable acclaim in the National Conservatory of Arts and Trades. Charles Pigeon died at his home in Paris, at 54 Rue de Rennes, in 1915. His wife preceded him in death in 1909. Their grave is of the two of them, he dressed in a business suit and her in an elegant dress, reclining in bed. Pigeon is resting on one elbow, holding a notebook and pencil that he was using to write notes in, while his wife listens attentively. Above the bed, an angel holds a Pigeon Lamp above the two. Pigeon had purchased the gravesite in 1905, intending to allow all of his family to be buried there; the site is large enough to hold 18 family members.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 18 Aug 1998
  • Find A Grave Memorial 3460
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Charles Pigeon (29 Mar 1838–18 Mar 1915), Find A Grave Memorial no. 3460, citing Cimetière de Montparnasse, Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France ; Maintained by Find A Grave .