Which garment was patented by a Scottish chemist Charles Macintosh in 1823?
The Mackintosh or raincoat (abbreviated as mac) is a form of waterproof raincoat, first sold in 1824, made out of rubberised fabric. The Mackintosh is named after its Scottish inventor Charles Macintosh (29 December 1766 – 25 July 1843).
A detailed history of the invention of the Mackintosh was published by Schurer. The essence of Macintosh's process was the sandwiching of an impermeable layer of a solution of rubber in naphtha between two layers of fabric. The naphtha was distilled from coal tar.
In 1830 Macintosh's company merged with the clothing company of Thomas Hancock in Manchester. Production of rubberised coats soon spread across the UK. All kinds of coats were produced with rubberized material, including riding coats and coats supplied to the British Army, British railways, and UK police forces.
Early coats had problems with poor smell, stiffness, and a tendency to melt in hot weather. Hancock improved his waterproof fabrics, patenting a method for vulcanising rubber in 1843, solving many of the problems.
Around the turn of the 21st century, senior staff members acquired the company and established the traditional rubberised Mackintosh coat as an upmarket brand in its own right. The company collaborated with leading fashion houses such as Gucci, Hermès, Louis Vuitton, and Liberty. The company won a Queen's Award for Enterprise in 2000 for its success in international trade. In December 2003 the company name was formally changed to Mackintosh.