Prior to the manufacture of Henry Ford’s Model A, a patent was granted in November of 1905 for a window cleaning device. During a trip to New York City, the inventor noticed that streetcar drivers had to drive with their windows down when it rained to be able to see to drive. The solution was to invent a swinging arm device with a rubber blade that could be operated from the inside of the vehicle via a lever. The windshield wipers became standard equipment on all American cars in 1916.The electric roller-based wipers was patented in 1917 and were called the “Storm Windshield Cleaner.” However, the product was not a commercial success. The automobile gave women ample opportunity for invention. In 1923, of the 345 inventions listed under “transportation” in the Women’s Bureau Bulletin No. 28, about half were related and another 25 concerned traffic signals and turn indicators. Among those inventions were a carburetor, a clutch mechanism, an electric starter, and a starting mechanism. So now you know it was a woman who invented windshield wipers and her name was Mary Anderson.