Today is February 15…
Cyrus McCormick was born on this day in 1809, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. He perfected the reaper, which revolutionized farm methods. The idea for the reaper came from another Mc… a man named McPhetrich. Cyrus’ father bought the plans for that and then by 1834, Cyrus had perfected and patented his version of the design.
He and his brother Leyland moved to Chicago and there they founded the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company (now part of International Harvester). William H Seward said of McCormick's invention that owing to it, "the line of civilization moves westward thirty miles each year."
Cyrus was quite the benefactor and one of our own PCUSA seminaries, McCormick T S in Chicago, bears his name.
(A different reaper, The Grim Reaper would appear for Cyrus in 1884)