Telescoping Brow Patent Model

Telescoping Brow Patent Model

Alexander M. Wellens received patent number 2,803,841, on August 27, 1957 for his design of a telescoping gangway. During World War I, the U.S. Navy began a Beneficial Suggestion Program that encouraged its civilian employees to propose workplace improvements in exchange for cash awards. Wellens was an employee of a U.S. Naval Station in Seattle, Washington, and entered his gangway into the suggestion program in 1948. This is the model the station's sheet-metal shop built to demonstrate his idea.
Wellens's innovation was to anchor the gangway's ends to both deck and pier, with the result that the plank would extend and contract automatically as the ship rose and fell on the tide. This helped obviate the harsh angles at high and low tide that created hazardous working conditions.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Patent Model, Telescoping Brow
Object Type
Patent Model
Date made
patent date
Wellens, Alexander M.
Associated Place
United States: Washington, Seattle
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
overall: 8 1/2 in x 9 in x 30 in; 21.59 cm x 22.86 cm x 76.2 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
patent number
Credit Line
Gift of Alexander M. Wellens
Patent Models
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
America on the Move
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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