January 20, 1885: the Gravity Pleasure Switchback Railway Patent
1885 – Sounding like anything but a roller coaster, the Gravity Pleasure Switchback Railway was the first American designed amusement coaster designed by LaMarcus Adna Thompson. Only 5 cents to ride, the Switchback was a simple coaster that took you about 600 feet to the next tower at six miles per hour. It had a height of 50 feet and a drop of 43 feet.
It opened on June 16, 1884 and eventually was replaced. But on this day, the roller coaster saw one of its first patents from this ride.
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