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In reference to patent: US 2,768,768 A

My late father, Vern L. Boven, is shown on this patent for the caulking gun from 1953. Does this mean that he was the inventor? If so, did he receive any compensation (or is anything possibly due to his family) for his invention? Is there any way for me to research this?

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Yes, your father is one of the inventors, if he is the same Vern L. Boven of Miami, Florida:

Norman M. Cornell, Shaker Heights; Ohio, and Harold M. Gulick and Vern L. Boven, Miami, Fla., assignors to the Gibson Homan’s Company, Cleveland, Ohio, a corporation of Ohio.

This patent would have expired on October 30, 1973, so it is now in the public domain and available for anyone to manufacture and sell without licensing the invention. I am really reaching for a suitable answer because patent law and practices have changed dramatically in the past 62 years. Someone else might be able to add more detail to this answer.

Corporate policy varies somewhat, but in general when an employee of a company invents something patentable, the company provides some amount of compensation (e.g., in the form of a bonus) if the grant issues. Sometimes, a company will enter into an agreement with the employee for a percentage of royalties on sales and licensing of the patent. However, this is not always a large amount (for instance, many companies will pay the sum of One Dollar for the assignment of a patent; I have accepted this once before as well, it makes it a valid legal transaction with an auditable paper trail).

Since your father and the other co-inventors assigned the patent to the Gibson Hohman’s Company, there would have been some financial arrangement between them. However, this information is not subject to public disclosure. You may be able to contact the company and see if they would be willing to work with you on providing some information, but I would not expect much, especially since their financial obligations regarding the patent were to your father (not the family) and have been over for nearly 42 years.

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    Yes, my father is the same Vern Leroy Boven of Miami, Florida. My interest is primarily historical in nature. I never knew about him being involved in the invention of the caulking gun and only stumbled upon this information during some family history research. My father passed away in 1977 but it would be of interest to me to check with the company to see if they could provide any additional information on his contribution. I appreciate your reply to my post. – Bette Ebel Aug 19 '15 at 2:20

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