First Generation RollerBlades

DATELINE January 4, 1863:James Plimpton of New York City patented 4-wheeled roller skates with one wheel at each corner of the skate. Previous skates had wheels in a line.

That’s right – Roller Skates evolved from Roller Blades. On this day in 1863, a Mr. Plimpton registered his invention that would, according to the legal documentation*, “get them wheely-works out to the cornermongers of my buster browns, see?”

Whoda thunk that so many years would pass until someone would invent roller blades based on the inspiration of roller skates, where, according to the legal documentation*, “put the wheels in the center, broseph!”

Fun fact regarding my size 15 feet and roller blades: the shoe part is so big that it almost requires an extra wheel. No kidding. I wouldn’t kid about something so embarrassing.

Fun fact regarding my son Malachi: he was asking me one day about the WheelBoots in the garage. Guess what he was talking about. That’s right: RollerBlades — which shall henceforth be known as WheelBoots in my house. I like that name a lot better.

About radamdavidson

I'm a husband, dad, and pastor living in Portage, Michigan. I suppose I'm a euphoric melancholy generalist with average skills, experiences, and passions across several intertwined disciplines and hobbies including music, speaking, writing, leadership, ministry, and collecting cultural artifacts from the 1980's -- mostly vintage boomboxes. You can read my blog at, subscribe to my podcast (RadCast) or friend me on
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