Albert S. Russell
From Kook Science
|Albert S. Russell|
|Born||9 February 1846|
|Died||31 July 1916 (70)|
St. Joseph, Buchanan Co., Missouri
Albert Smith Russell (February 9, 1846 - July 31, 1916) was an American linguist who, while resident at Jefferson, Greene Co., Iowa, claimed in 1897 that he had "really solved the problem of perpetual motion" by building a contraption with a chain of corks passing through a tube into an enclosed dish of water, whereby the buoyancy would act to cause 2½ corks to move upward as 1 cork was submerged. While the claims received some regional press attention, the invention seems to have amounted to nothing.
Perpetual Motion (1897)
- "PERPETUAL MOTION. A Jefferson Man Thinks He Has Solved the Vexed Question.", Audubon Republican (Audubon, IA): 6, 25 Nov. 1897, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121337625/perpetual-motion-a-jefferson-man/
- "A Perpetual Motion Crank.", The St. Joseph Herald (St. Joseph, MO): 5, 26 Dec. 1897, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121338214/a-perpetual-motion-crank/
- "Another perpetual motion machine has been invented.", Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY): 6, 29 Dec. 1897, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121337528/another-perpetual-motion-machine-has/
Insanity Complaint (1901)
Russell was arrested at Des Moines four years later and briefly placed into the care of the Asylum for the Insane at Mount Pleasant, Iowa, based on a complaint that he had refused to allow his children to attend public schools and kept them impoverished; this apparent insanity was not, however, attributed to a fanatic interest in perpetual motion. Russell seems to have been released not long after, and continued living with his children for the remainder of his life.
- "Fall of a Professor.", The Courier (Waterloo, IA): 2, 23 Dec. 1901, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121342696/fall-of-a-professor/
- "Professor Is in an Asylum.", The Daily Democrat (Freeport, IL): 2, 26 Dec. 1901, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121342730/professor-is-in-an-asylum/
Letters to the Editor
Russell wrote frequent letters that were published in newspapers, these ranging from patriotic poetry to concepts for patent-worthy inventions.
- "AERIAL POSSIBILITIES.", The Des Moines Register (Des Moines, IA): 4, 5 May 1903, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/121342953/aerial-possibilities/
- Missouri, U.S., Death Certificates, 1910-1969. Albert S. Russell, Certificate 27126.